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At 1 II u I! ill " I Mil AM) AM) 1 UK 1 Ml IS11,"' " III . 












19Q — u. < . 179. 


The character and popularity of Miltiades— Naval expedition- 
Siege of FarO*— Conduct of Miltiades — IK 
tenced— His death . . . 3 


The Athenian Tragedy — Its origin — Thespis — Phrynichus — 
jEschylus— Analysis of the tragedies of iEschylus . 1 i 


Aristides— His character and position — The rise of Themistocles 
— Aristides is ostracised — The ostracism examined — The in- 
fluence of Themistocles increases— The silver mines of Laurion 
— Their product applied by Themistocles to the increase of 
the Navy — New direction given to the national character 64 


( HAPTER iv 

The preparations of Darius Revolt of Egypt Dispute foi 

succession to t In- Persian ti. 

view <>t the leading events and characteristics of his reign Ht 

( HAPTSI \. 

Xerxes conducts an ox petition into Egypt— Hi finally re*. 
on the invasion of ( Jirece— Vast picp.i rat i>m«* for the con.. 
of Europe— Xerxes arrives at Bai Di l| itches envo 

tin- (Jrttk States, demanding trilnit« — The bridge of the II 

lespont Kr view of the Peraiaa armament at A! 

encamps at TL 


The conduct of the (Greeks— The oracle relating to Salamis Ait 
of Themistocles— The Isthmian congress— Embassies to Argos, 
Crete, Corcyra and Syracuse— Their ill success — The Thes- 
salians send envoys to the Isthmus — The Greeks advance to 
Tempe, but retreat — The fleet despatched to Ait* minimi, and 
the pass of Therm'.pyhc occupied — Numbers of the Grecian 
fleet— Battle of Thermopylae 


The advice of Demaratus to Xerxes — Themistocles — Actions ofF 
Artemiarum — The Greeks retreat — The Persians invade 
Delphi, and are repulsed with great loss— The Athenians, un- 
aided by their allies, abandon Athens, and embark for Salamis 
— The irresolute and selfish policy of the Peloponnesiaus — Dex- 
terity and firmness of Themistocles— Battle of Salamis — An- 
dros and Carystus besieged by the Greeks — Anecdotes of 
Themistocles— Honours awarded to him in Sparta— Xerxes 
returns to Asia — Olynthus and Potidaea besieged by Artabazus 
— The Athenians return home — The ostracism of Aristides is 
repealed . . . • . lo2 



Embassy of Alexander of Macedon to Athens — The result of his 
proposals — Athenians retreat to Salamis — .Marduuius occupies 
Athens— The Athenians semi envoys to Sparta — I'ausanias 
ItlCCeedl Cleombrotus as recent of Sparta— Kattle of l'latiea — 
Thehes besieged by the Athenians— Battle of My 
of Sestos— Conclusion of the Persian war . 108 


FUO.M III! IM> "I till INVASION TO Till, HK.% 1 H ol 

. nii>\. ii . . i n 

Remarks on the effects of war — State of Athens— Interference of 
Sparta with respect to the fortifications of Athens — Dexterous 
conduct of Themistocles -The new harbour of the Pyrams — 
Proposition of the Spartans in the Amphietyonic council de- 
feated by Themistocles— Allied fleet at Cyprus and Hvzan- 
tium — Pausanias — Alteration in his character — His ambitious 
views and treason— The revolt of the louians from the Spartan 
command — l'ausanias recalled — Don s him— The 

Athenians rise to the head of the Ionian league — Delos made 
the senate and treasury of the allies— Able and prudent 
management of Aristides — Cimon succeeds to the command 
of the fleet — Character of Cimon — Eion besiegei! lio- 

nised by Attieans— Supposed discovery of th • bones of The- 
seus—Declining power of Themistocles — Democratic change 
in the constitution— Themistocles ostracised — Death of Aris- 
tides • . . . .237 

vi ( ONTENTS. 


Popularity and policy ol ('imon— Naxos revolt?, truin the Ionian 
league-- If besieged by Citnon — Conspiracy ami late ot Fau- 
sanias — Flight and adventure.-. of ThcmistoclcB — 11 is death 


Keduction of Naxos— Actions off Cyprus— Mann* rs of Cimon— 

Improvements in Athens— ( "olony at ihc Nine Wayi — Siege of 
Thasos— Earthquake in Sparta— Revolt of 1 1 1 l«»t^, occupation 
of Ithome, and third Mcsscnian war — Rise and character of 
Fericles — Prosecution and acquittal of Cimon — The Athenians 
assist the Spartans at Ithome — Thasos surrenders — Breai h 
b e t w o eu the Athenians and Spartans — Constitutional innova- 
tions at Athens — Ostracism of Cimon 


AVar between Megara and Corinth — Megara and Pegae garri- 
soned by Athenians— Review of affairs at the Persian court — 
Accession of Artaxerxes— Revolt of Egypt under Iuarus — 
Athenian expedition to assist Iuarus — xKgina besieged — The 
Corinthians defeated — Spartan conspiracy with the Athenian 
oligarchy — Battle of Tanagra — Campaign and successes of 
Myronides — Plot of the oligarchy against the republic — Recal 
of Cimon — Long Walls completed — JEgina reduced — Expedi- 
tion under Tolmides — Ithome surrenders — The insurgents are 
settled at Naupactus — Disastrous termination of the Egyptian 
expedition — The Athenians march into Thessaly to restore 
Orestes the Tagus — Campaign under Pericles — Truce of five 
years with the Peloponnesians — Cimon sets sail for Cyprus — 
Pretended treaty of peace with Persia — Death of Cimon 3+0 



Change of manners in Athens— Begun under the Pisistratidae — 
Effects of the Persian war, and the intimate connexion with 
Ionia — The Hetaera? — The political eminence lately acquired 
by Athens — The transfer of the treasury from Delos to Athens 
— Latent dangers and evds — First, the artificial greatness of 
Athens not supported by natural strength — Secondly, her per- 
nicious reliance on tribute — Thirdly, deterioration of national 
spirit commenced by Cimon in the use of bribes and public 
tables — Fourthly, defects in popular courts of law — Proj 
of general education — History — Its Ionian origin — Early his- 
torians — — Cedmui — Eugeon — Hellanicui — Phere- 
cydes — Xanthus — View of the life and writings of Herodotus 
— Progress of philosophy since Thales — Philosophers of the 
Ionian and F.lcatic ieaOOtt>- Pythagoras — II i> philosophical 
tenets and political influence— Kffei t of these philosophers on 
Athens — School of political philosophy continued in Athens 
from the time of Solon — Anaxagoras — Archelaus — Philo.Miphy 
not a thing apart from the ordinary life of the Athenians 376 



i II-. IN 1 III I II IK I) \ I Alt nr 1 III I'HjiMSM.UN WAR, B.C. 429. 


Thucydides chosen by the aristocratic party to oppose Perick ■ 
— His policy — Munificence of Pericles — Sacred war— Battle of 
Coronet — Revolt of Eubo?a and Megara — Invasion and re- 
treat of the Peloponnesians — Reduction of Eubcea — Punish- 
ment of Histirca — A thirty years' truce concluded with the 
Peloponnesians— Ostracism of Thucydides . 429 

Mil C0NT1 


I M'sof'tlicp »— Judicial courts ol I 

allies transferred to Athena Bketch of the Athenian i 
— Public buBdingi the work of the [rraplo rather than or l 
dee — Vices and ytentneM of Athene hod t 

Principle of payment e!iara< tci i«e«. the policy of the period- 
It is the policy of civilisation— ( olonisation, (1 it < 


Rerhdocj of the census— Samian war— Sketch of the 
progress of the Athenian comedy to the time of Aristoph- 


Tragedies of 8ophoclei 


—B.C. 479. 


A T 1 1 E X S : 

CHAPTKH I AM) I'Jl'l I. \KI I V (.1 Mll.m 



I. History is rarely more than the biography of hook 
great men. Through a indivi- 


duals we trace the charaotet and deetinj of 1. 

nations. Tin: PEOPLE glide away from us, | 

sublime hut intangible abstraction, and the \<> ; 
of the mighty Agora reaches us only through 
the medium of its representat ty. 

The more democratic the >tut» i , the more preva- 
lent this delegation of it- history to the Few; 
since it is the prerogative of democracies to 

B 2 


booi give the widest competition and tli<- keenest sx- 
citemenl t<> individual (renins : and the trim 
i. spirit of democracy i- dormant or defunct, wnen 
wc find no one elevated t<> an intellectual throne 
■bore tin- rest. In regarding tin- characters of 
men thus concentrating npon themselves ovr 

WOTVej of a nation, it is OOT duty srdnloii-lv to 

discriminate between their qnalitiei and their 
deeds: for it seldom happens that their renown 
in life was unattended with revere- « < jually 

Blgnal, — that the popularity of to-day WU not. 

followed by tin- persecution of to-morrow : ami 
in these vicissitudes, our justice is no leaf ap- 
pealed to than our pity, aud we arc called upon 
to decide, as judges, a grave and solemn can-<- 
between the silence of a departed People, and 
the eloquence of imperishable names. 

We have already observed in the character of 
Miltiades that astute and calculating temper- 
ament common to most men whose lot it has 
been to struggle for precarious power in the 
midst of formidable foes. We have seen that 
his profound and scheming intellect was not ac- 
companied by any very rigid or high-wrought 
principle; and placed, as the chief of the 
Chersonese had been from his youth upward, in 
situations of great peril and embarrassment, 
aiming always at supreme power, and, in his 


harassed and stormy domain, removed far from BOOK 
the public opinion of the fiv ce, it CBAr 

was natural that his political code sliould l 
have become tempered by a sinister ambition, 
and that the citizen of Athens should 
actuated by motives scarcely more disinterested 
than those which animated the tyrant of the 

Chersonese. The ruler of ene district may be 

the hero, but can scarcely be the patriot, of 

another. The long influence of yean and 
custom — the unconscious d< ■ to the 

opinion of those whom our youth has h. 
taught to venerate, can alone suffice to tame 

down an enterprising and grasping mind to 
objects of public advantage, in preference to de- 
signs for individual aggrandizement : influen 

of such a nature had never operated upon the 
views and faculties of the hero of -Maratlioii. 
Habituated to the enjoyment of absolute eom- 
mand, he seemed incapable of the dut ivil 

subordination ; and the custom of a life in. 
him on to the desire of power.* These featu 
of his character fairly considered, we shall see 
little to astonish us in the later reverses of Mil- 
tiadea, and find additional causes for the popular 
Mispicions he incurred. 

* " Cum consuetudine ait imperii cupiditatem tralii 
videretur." — Nepef in Vit. Milt. cap. 8. 

<» ATHENS : 

eno* ]l. But gfter the ricter? of Marathon, the 


power of Miltiadei was at it- height Ha 

<• bad alwaja pofaeaied the affection of the 

Athenians, which liis mama well .'«s hi^ 

talent- eontribnted to obtain tor him. AH'able 

and courteous — none were to meaa ai to be 
excluded from his preeence ; and the triumph 
he bad just achiered so largely swelled dm j»o- 

jiularity that the most unhesitating coufid< 

\va> placed in all hifl - ons. 

in addition to the victory of .Marathon, Mil- 
tiades, during his tyranny in the CheTSOl* 

had gratined the* resentment and increased the 

dominion of the Athenians. A mde tribe, 
cording to all authority, of the va-t and railed 
Pelasgic family, hut essentially foreign to, and 

never amalgamated with, the uutigenonfl Pelas* 

giane of the Athenian soil, had in very remote 
times ohtained a settlement in Attica. They 
had assisted the Athenians in the wall of their 
citadel, which confirmed, by its characteristic 
masonry, the general tradition of their Pela 
race. Settled, afterwards, near Hymettus, they 
refused to blend with the general population — 
quarrels between neighbours so near, naturally 
ensued — the settlers were expelled, and fixed 
themselves in the Islands of Lemnos and Imbros 
— a piratical and savage horde. They kept 


alive their ancient grudge with the Athenians, book 
and, in one of their excursions, landed in Attica, 
and carried off some of the women whilst cele- l 
brating a festival of Diana. These captives 
they subjected to their embraces, and ultimately 
massacred, together with the offspring <»t" the 
intercourse. "TheLemnian Horrors" became 
a proverbial phrase — the wrath of the godl 
manifested itself in the curse of general sterilit \ , 
and the criminal Pelasgi were commanded l»v 
the oracle to repair the heinous injury they 
had inflicted on the Athenian-. The latter 
were satisfied with no atonement less than that 
of the surrender of the islands occupied by the 
offenders. Tradition thus reported the llHTl III 
of the Pclasgi to so stern a demand— " When- 
ever one of your vessels in a single day, and 
with a northern wind, make- it- passage to us, 
we will comply." 

Time past on, the injury \\a- unatoned, the 
remembrance remained—when Miltiades (then 
in the Chersonese) passed from Ekeos in a single 
day, and with a north wind, to the Pelasgian 
Islands, avenged the cause of his countrymen, 
and annexed Leinnos and Imbros to the Athenian 
Bway. The remembrance of this exploit had 
from the first endeared Miltiades to the Athe- 
nians, and since the field of Marathon, lie united 


BOOI in himself the two strangest claim.- to popular 

confidence ;— Ik- m tin- deliverer from reoeal 
'. perils, and the avenger of hereditary irrong 

The chief oi' the ( Ihersonese v. 
to avail hJWMfllf of the advantage of hi- j 

tion. lie promised the Athenian a rd mora 

lucrative, if less glorious enterprise than that 
against the Persians, and demanded a fled "I 

seventy -hips, with a -upplv oi" men and money, 

for an expedition from which be assured them 

he was certain to return laden with spoil 
and treasure. He did not -peril's tin* pi 
against which the expedition was to he directed; 
hut so great was the belief in hi- hone-tv and 
fortune, that the Athenians were contented to 
grant his demand. r J'he requisite prepara- 
tions made, Miltiades set sail. Assuming the 
general right to punish those islands which 
had sided with the Persian, he proceeded to 
Paros, which had contrihuted a trireme to the 
arnlament of Datis. But heneath the pretext of 
national revenge, Miltiades is said to have 
sought the occasion to prosecute a selfish resent- 
ment. During his tyranny in the Chersonese, a 
Parian, named Lysagoras, had sought to injure 
him with the Persian government, and the chief 
now wreaked upon the island the retaliation due 
to an individual. 


Such is the account of Herodotus — an account book 
not indeed inconsistent with the vindictive pat- 
sions still common to the inhabitants ot the i. 
western clime, but certainly scarce in keep! 
with the calculating and politic character of 
Miltiades : for men £0 backward in the car 
of ambition when revenging a pari offence upon 
a foe that is DO longer formidable. 

Miltiades landed on the island, laid vigOIOUi 

siege to the principal city, and demanded from the 

inhabitants the penalty of a hundred talent-. The 

besieged refused the terms, and worked day and 
night at the task of strengthening the city lor 
defence. Nevertheless, Miltiades succeeded in 
cutting off all supplies, and the city was on the 
point of yielding ; — when suddenly the chief 

lire to the fortifications he had erected, drew oil' 
his fleet, and returned to Athene, not only with- 
oi:t the treasure he had promised, hut with an 

ignominious diminution of the glory he had 
already acquired. The moat probable roeuo for 

a conduct* so extraordinary was, that bv some 
accident a grove on the continent wee >it On lire 
— the flame, visible equally to the bes 
and the besieged, was interpreted alike by both : 
each party imagined it a signal from the Persian 
fleet -the one was dissuaded from yielding, and 
* Coin. Nepofl in Yit. Milt. cap. 7. 


book the other intimidated from continuing (besiege, 

An additional reason i«>r tin- ntreal wasase* 

< HAP. 

'• wound in tin- Leg which Miluades had recei 
either in the course of th k, <>r l> 

oidenl be met with when attempting with ss 

legious superstition to consult tin lnl"« rnal 1 deities 
on ground dedicated to < civs. 

III. We may readily conceive tin 
and indignation with which, after, so nusnj sao- 
misei on ti I such unbounded i 

fidence an tin- other, the Athenians witucssrd 
the return of this fruitiest iithm. 

doubt, the wily and e Cjui fOeaJ part- of tin- 

character of Miltiadea, !•■ in shade by bis 

brilliant qualities, earns now more obviously in 
new. He was impeached capitally by Xsos- 

thippttS, an Athenian nobh:. th. j that 

great aristocratic faction of the Alcmssonids, 

which, inimical alike to the tyrant and tin 
magogue, brooked neither a master of the state, 
nor a hero with the people. Miltiades was 
charged with having accepted a bribe from the 
Persians,* which had induced him to quit tin- 
siege of Paros at the moment when success 

The unfortunate chief was prevented by his 
wound from pleading his own cause — he was 
* Nepos. in Yit. Milt. can. 7. 


borne into the court stretched upon hi> couch, book 
while his brother, Tieesssi iducted bis de- (HU , 

fence. Through the medium of his advocate l - 
Miltiade - neither rigorously to hi 

luted the accusation of treason t<> tie 

tactorily to have explained Oil mOSTVCS fat 

raising the siege. His glory was bis defeni 

and the chief answer to Xanthippai was " 

thon and Lemnos." The crime alleged against 

him was ot'a capital nature; hut de-pite the rank 

of theaocuser, and the excitement of the audience, 
the people refused to pronounce sentence of death 
upon SO illustrious I num. d him 

guilty, it i- true hut they oommuted the capital 

inriiction to a fine of fifty talent-. Before the tine 
was paid, Miltiades expired of the mortiticat 
ofbil WOOJid. The fine wai afterward- paid l»\ 
his SOU, (iiuon. Thus ended a life full of ad- 
venture ami \ iei-Mtude. 

Tin- trial of Miltiad t'teii been quoted 

in proof of the ingratitude and fiekhiie-- of the 

Athenian people. No charge a 
inconsiderately made, lie m d of a 

pital crime, not by the people, hut by a p ow erfu l 

nohle. The noble demanded his death — app. 
to have proved the charge — to have had the 1 
which imposed death, wholly on his side — and 
"the favour of the people it waf - Herodotus 

book expressly, " which aavcd bii lit'.-. • When wt 

OHAP C<WMlder«ll thr : - i ri - 1 1 1 1 1 ~ t . 1 1 1 • - • - of tin- r:i««- tli«- 

'• wound to the popular vanity tin- disappoint' 
iiinit of excited expectation 1 1 * « - anaeoountable 

conduct Of MiltiaoV-' ami tlnn leg bii 

punishment, after ■ i ion which i niilloil 

(lentil, only in the ordinate 

pnniaiy lin.J we cannot but allow thai tin- 

I. 111). \'l. cap. C XXWI. 

f Nepos says, tin Bag im < 
\ In li;id conducted to Pwoti but Boeckh right! 
server, that it ii an ignorant oncrtion of that outhot that the 
line- was intended : ipensation, being the usual mode 

of assessing the often* 

The case is simply this,— Miltiades was accused — whe- 
ther justly or BD JUO ttj I — it was clearly as impossi- 
ble not I the accusation, and to try the cause, as it 
would be for an English court of just tO admit a 
criminal action against Lord do \ or the Duke of Wellington. 
Was Miltiades guilty or not? This we cannot tell. We 
know that he was tried according to the law, and that the 
Athenians thought him guilty, for they condemned him. 
far this is not ingratitude — it is the course of law. A man is 
tried and found guilty — if past services and renown were to 
l&ve the great from punishment when convicted of a state of- 
fence, society would, perhaps, be disorganized, and certainly a 
free state would cease to exist. The question therefore shrinks 
to this — was it, or was it not ungrateful in the people to 
relax the penalty of death, legally incurred, and commute 
it to a heavy fine ? I fear we shall find few instances of 
greater clemency in monarchies however mild. Miltiades 


Athenian people, (even while vindicating the nut- tool 

jesta of law, which in all civilized communities 

. Mil* 

must judge offences without reaped to persons,) i. 
were not, in this instance, forgetful of tl, 
\ ices, nor harsh to the offencee, of their great 
liitii . 

unhappily died. But nature slew liim, not the Athenian 
people. And it cannot Ik- Hid with greater ju>tiee i>t* the 

Athenians, than of ■ people no leu illustrious, ami who are 

now their judges, that it was their iu»tom, " iU tuer un 
Ai/tinii pom t mvtiriKjtr La autrts." 

I I 

ii \n Bfl ii. 



book I. From the melancholy tut.' of Mill 

/..»» ^'' are bow invited to a subnet no ].-- cd»- 

< 1 1 A 1 . J 

U- nected with this important period in the 

torv of Atlitii-. The interval of i Inch 

followed the battle of Marathon allow- Df to 

pnnfe, and notice the intellectual » which 

the Athenians had progressed nnce the tyranny 
of PuMtfltni and his sons. 

We have remarked the more familiar ac- 
quaintance with the poems of Homer which 
resulted from the labours and example 
Pisistratus. This event, (for event it was,) 
combined with other causes, — the founda- 
tion of a public library, the erection of public 
buildings, and the institution of public gar- 
dens, — to create, with apparent suddeni. 
amongst a susceptible and lively population, a 


general cultivation of taste. The citizen! were 
brought together in their hour taxation, 4 

hy the urbane and social manmr of life, und< r U. 
porticos and in gardens, which it was the peli 

of a graceful and benignant tyrant to inculca' 
and the native genioj, hitherto dormant, of the 
quick Ionian race, once awakened to literan and 
intellectual objects, created an audience . wn 

before it found expTearion in a pee*; Hm ele- 
gant effeminacy of Hipperehne eoniributed to 
»r the taste of the people fa die example 

of the great i- nowhere mete pottal Qfrei tlie 
multitude, than in the cultivation of the I 
Patronage may not produce poets, but it multi- 
plier critics, Anacreon and Sim. mid,-, ml 

* Tin i people, which is to art what public opi- 

nion is to legislation, is formed, like public opinion, by habi- 
tual social Intercourse and collision. T! men are 
brought together to CO Pfar w Mad dMCOM] the more the prin- 
ciples of a general, national taste will become both diti. 
and refined. Less to their climate, to tin . , to their 
own beaut \ of form, than to their social habits and prefer 
of the public to the domestic life, did the Athenians, and 
the Grecian republics generally, owe that wonderful sus- 
ceptibility to the Beautiful and Harmonious, which distin- 
guishes them above all nations, ancient or modern. Solitude 
may exalt the genius of a man, but communion alone can 
refine the taste of a people. 

16 mi vs : 

hook <liirc<l among*! the Athenians by Eiipparcli 
;iikI enjoying his friendship, no doubt added 
II. largely to the influence which poctr) h 
to assume. The pecnli tMM of those 

poets, imbued, with harmonious contagion, the 

niufl «>t* the firsl of the Athenian dramat 
w bote \\«>rk-, alas 1 ue loot to U-. tho 
. \ idenee of their chan IbotH 

rhe same time, the Athenian** mu»t neeewsa- 
rily have been made nioiv iutima: 

quainted with the rarioui wealth of the lyric 

poet- of Ionia and the isles. Thus it hap- 
pened, tliat their models in poetry were of 
two kinds, the Epic and the Lyric, and in 

the natural connexiim of art. it w th<- 

next step to accomplish a ip l«.<trv 

which should attempt to unite the two. Hap- 
pily, at this time Athens pos sesse d ■ man of 

true genius, whose attention early circumstances 
had directed to a rude and primitive order 
of histrionic recitation : — Phrynichus, the p 
was a disciple of Thespis, the mime : to him 
belongs this honour, that out of the elements 
of the broadest Farce he conceived the first grand 
combinations of the Tragic Drama. 

II. From time immemorial — as far hack, per- 
haps, as the grove possessed an altar, and the 
waters supplied a reed for the pastoral pipe-- 


Poetry and Music had been dedicated to the ■Op* 
worship of the gods off i. At the appointed ( ., m . 

season of festival to tacfa several deity, Hi> *'• 
praisei were sung, Bii traditionary achiei 
menti were recited. One of the divinities last 
introduced into Greece— the mystic and en 
matical Dionysos, or Bacchus, I the 

popular and enthusiastic adoration naturally 

due to die Qodofthe Vineyard, and die M Un- 
binder of galling car lli> festival, cele- 

brated at the most joyous of agricultural reasons,* 
was associated also with the moat ezhilarati 
associations. Dithyrambs, or wild and exnlti 
songs, at first extemporaneous, celebrated the 
triumphs of the god 1>\ d the rude 

hymn swelled into prepared and artful mea- 
sures, performed by s chorus that daa>Wrd circli 

round tht' altar ; and the dithyramh ftSSIIIIUxl a 

lofty and lolemn strain, adapted to tin- -ami 
of sacrifice and the emblematic majesty of the 
god. At the same time, another hand (con- 
nected with the Phallic jti . which, how - 
ever outwardly obscene, betokened only, at 
origin, the symbol of fertility, and betrays the 

* It seems probable that the principal Bacchic festival was 
originally held at the time of the vintage — condita , 
mtntd. But from the earliest know n period in Attiea, all the tri- 
ple Dionysiawere celebrated during the w inter ami the spring. 


in mm; VI : 

booi philosophy ot'sonir alien and eastern creed*) im- 
plored in man h'relj and homelj strains Ihi 

ii. blessing of the prodigal ami jovial deity. 'I 

< inoiiial lOfigl r<rri\t(l | wanton and \vild ad- 
dition, as. in Order, j »< i li;« j »-. inoiv clotelj to repre- 
sent ami pcrsonirj tin- inotl.\ march of tin- Liber 

Pater, the chortuv-singers I d from the « 

browsing goat which thej sacrificed, the bi 
and horns, which furnished forth the m< 

mimicry <>i" the Satyr and tin- Fann. Under 

Koenec of tibia diaguise, the songs t>< i 
obaoane and groteaqae, and the mummi 
with aaofa other in obtaining tin- applause oi 

rural amlirm ••• b] Wild buffoonery and u 

stricted jest Wnether as the prize of the win- 
ner, " r :i ^ kh* object of sacrifice, the goal fr< 
iu tin- (ireek) was a sufficiently important per- 
sonage to bestow apon the exhibition the 

homely name of Tragedy, or GoAT-SO 
destined afterwards to be exalted bj as* 

tion with the proudest efforts of human genius. 

* Egyptian, according to Herodotus, who asserts, that Ml- 
1 ampus first introduced the Phallic symbol amongst tbt 
though he never sufficiently explained its mysterious signi- 
fications, which various sages since his time had, however, 
satisfactorily interpreted. It is just to the Greeks to add, 
that this importation, with the other rites of Bacchus, was 
considered at utter variance with their usual habits and 


And, while the Dithyramb. yet amidst the Dorian hook 
tribes, retained the fire and dignity of it- here* 
ditury character — while in Sicyon it rose in IL 
stately and mournful measures to the memof] 
Adrastus, the Arrive hero— while in Corinth, 
under the polished rule of Periander, Arion im- 
parted to tie- antique hymn a new character and a 
more scientific music,* — gradually, in Attica 
gave way before the familiar and fantastic humoun 
of the satyrs, sometime! abridged to afford | 
scope to their exhibitions— §ometimei contract! 
the contagion of their burl Still, b< 

the reader will ol that the triuju/t/, or 

goat-tong, consisted of two part- first, the 

hihition of the mummer-, ami, lecondly, the 

dithyrambic chorus, moving in a circle round 

the altar of Bacchus. It BOB I the \\h 

mo.-t probable, though it i- a question oi 

dispute and great uncertainty, that not onl\ this 

festive ceremonial, hut also it- ancient name of 
tragedy, or goat-song, bad long been familiar in 

Attica,] when, ahout r ,, during the third 

* Herodotus asM'its that Anon first named, invented, and 
tatlghl the dithyramb at Corinth, but, as Bentley trium- 
phantly ttarfHi Athena us has preserved to us the very 
verses of Arehilochus, his pr< ury, in which 

the song of the dithyramb is named. 

f In these remarks upon the origin of the drama, it would 

20 A! Ill M 

lUH)K tyranny <>f PUlStratUS, B -kiltul and in_ 
'"• native of Icaria, an Atti«- village in which tin* 

' " n vl '' Elentherift, or Bacchic tted 

with peculiar care, surpassed all rompetitoiv in 

the exhihition <>f thc><- ru-tie entertainnn 

belong less to history than to scholastic diiiertatkm, to 

enter into all the disputed and disputable point*. I ilo 
not, therefore, pause with < us» tin- ques- 

tions eontested 1>\ antiquarians — such as, whether the 
'tragedy,' in its primitive and DOOM 'her with 

tin- pri/r -»at, was or was not known in Attica prior 

to TTunpilj (it Menu lO me that the least successful of 
Bentley's immortal work is that which attempt- I 
the latter propos it ion ;) still less do I think a grave answer 
due to thOSC who, in direct opposition to authorities headed 
by the grave and searching contend that the exhi- 

bitions of Thespis were of a serious and elevated char.: 
The historian must himself weigh the evidences on which he 
builds his conclusions, and come to those conclusion*, espe- 
cially in disputes which bring to unimportant and det.: 
inquiries the most costly expenditure of learning, without 
fatiguing the reader with a repetition of all the arguti 
which he accepts or rejects. For those who incline to go 
more deeply into subjects connected with the early Athe- 
nian drama, works by English and German authors, too 
celebrated to enumerate, wall be found in abundance. But 
even the most careless general reader will do well to de- 
light himself with that dissertation of Bentley on Phalaris, 
so familiar to students, and which, despite some few intem- 
perate and bold assumptions, will always remain one of the 
most colossal monuments of argument and erudition. 


He relieved the monotonous [ill MlllllMW of the hook 

Satyric Chorus bv introducing, usually in his 

J m J ■ CHAP. 

own person, a histrionic tale-teller, who from an IL 

elevated platform, and with the Iiv« 1\ gesticula- 
tions common still to the popular narrators of 

romance on the Mole of Naples, or in the 
bazaars of the East, entertained the audi. □ 
with some mythological legend* It was so cleat 
that during- this recital the Chorus remained un- 
necessarily idle and superfluous, that tli« 
improvement was at natural in i' it was 

important in it> consequences* Tin- SPSSl to 
make the ( IhoruS Utial tin- narrator l»\ nul 

question Of remark. 

The Choruses themselves wert imp roved in 
their professional art by Thespis. He invented 

dances, which for centuries retained their popu- 
larity on the stage, and is said to have gN 

histrionic disguise to hi- reciter*- at first, by the 

application of pigments to the face ; and aft 
wards, hy the construction of a rude linen ma-k. 

III. These improvements, chiefly mechanical, 

form the boundary to the achievements of 
Thespis. He did much to create a >tage— little 
to create tnujcdt/, in the proper acceptation of 

the word. His performances #ere still of a 

ludicrous and homely character, and much 
more akin to the comic than the tragic. Of that 

2$ ati 1 1 a 

booi which makes the esscnes ol tin- solemn drama 
of Athens it- stately plot, it- gigantic imag 
ii. its prodigal and sumptuous poetry, Tbeapii 

I not in any way the inventor. But Phi 

cms, the disciple ofThespi i /»» i . 

though perhaps dimly and imperfectly, tin- BOH 
career opened to tlie art. and lie may be said to 
have breathed the immortal spirit into the mere 
mechanics] forms, when he introduced 
into the bursts of the chorus and tin- monolo 
of the actor. Whatever else Phrynichus effected 
is uncertain. The developed plot — the introduc- 
tion of regular dialogue through the medium of 
a second actor — the pomp and eircuinstance — the 
symmetry and climax of the drama — do not appear 
to have appertained to his earlier efforts ; and the 
great artistical improvements which raised the 
simple incident to an elaborate structure of de- 
picted narrative and awful catastrophe, are 
ascribed, not to Phrynichns, but iEschylus. If 
the later works of Phrynichus betrayed these ex- 
cellencies, it is because iEschyl us had then become 
his rival, and he caught the heavenly light from 
the new star which was destined to eclipse him. 
But everything essential was done for the Athe- 
nian tragedy when Phrynichus took it from the 
Satyr and placed it under the protection of the 
Muse — when, forsaking the humours of the 


rustic farce, he selected a solemn subject from book 
the serious Wends of the most vivid of all mv- 

. CHAP, 

thologies— when he. breathed into the familiar 11. 

measures of the chorus the grandeur and iwtitt- 
ness of the lyric ode — when, in a word, taking 
nothing from Thespis, but the Btage and the per- 
formers, he borrowed his tale from Homer and 
his melody from Anacreon. We must not, th 
suppose, misled by the vulgar accounN of the 
Athenian drama, that the contest for the goat, 
and the buffooneries of The-pis, were it- ival 
origin : born of the epic and the lyric ^<>ng, 
Homer gave it character, and the lyriati lan- 
guage! Thespis and his pred onlj * 
gested the form to which the new-born poetry 
should be applied. 

IV. Thus under Phryniehus the Thespian 
drama rose into poetry , worthy to < it- 

influence upon poetieal emulation, when a 
young man of noble family and sublime genius 
rendered, perhaps, more thoughtful and pro- 
found by the cultivation of a invstieal phita 
phy,* which had lately emerged from the primi- 
tive schools of Ionian wisdom, brought to the 
rising art the united dignity of rank, philosophy, 
and genius. JEschylus, son of Euphorion, born 

* .r.sclivlus was a l\ thairorean. " Yeniat .L : m-Iiv1u>. sed 
ctiani lVthati'oreus." — Cic. Twc. Dis. b. ii. 'J. 


hook at Eleusis, b. c. 525, early latnrated ■ spirit 
naturally fiery tad i isaltad with the vivid pa 
i'i. ' of Homer. While v«-t i boy, and probably about 
tin- time when Phrynichus Bret elevated the 
Thespian drama, he if said to haw been inspired 
by a dream with the ambition to excel in the 
dramatic art. lint in Homer In- round m 
visionary rerelation to Msure bim of those ends, 
august and undeveloped, which the actor and 
tin* chorus might be made the instruments 
to effect. For when the idea of scenic reprw 
tattoo was once familiar, the epics of Hosner 
suggested the true nature of the drama. 
great characteristic of that poet is iin/iri- 
duality. Gods or men alike have their sepa- 
rate, unmistakeable attributes and distinction — 
they converse in dialogue — they act towards an 
appointed end. Bring Homer on the stage, and 
introduce two actors instead of a narrator, and 
a drama is at once effected. If Phrynichus from 
the first borrowed his story from Homer, 
iEschylus, with more creative genius, and more 
meditative intellect, saw that there was even 
a richer mine in the vitality of the Homeric 
spirit — the unity of the Homeric designs. 
Nor was Homer, perhaps, his sole though his 
guiding inspiration. The noble birth of JEschv- 
lus no doubt gave him those advantages of gene- 


ral acquaintance with the poetry of the rest book. 
of Greece, which an education formed under 
the lettered dynasty of the Pisistratida* would U. 
naturally confer upon the well-born. Wt hi 
seen that the dithyramb, debased in Attica to 
the Thespian chorus, was in the Dorian -t. 
already devoted to sublime themes, and i 
riched by elaborate art ; and Simonides, whose) 
elegies, peculiar for their sweetness, might have 
inspired the ■ ambrosial' Phrynichus, perhaps 
gave to the stern soul of /Each] hie. M to his own 
pupil Pindar, the model of a loftier music, in 
his (litliyrambic odes. 

V. At the age of twenty- live, the son of 

Euphorion produced his first tragedy, Thi 
appears to have been exhibited in the yeas 

after the appearance of Aristagora- at Athens, 
— in that very year so eventful and import- 
ant, when the Athenians lighted the llan 
of the Persian war amidst the blazing capital of 
Sardia. lie had two competitors in Pratina- 
and Chcerilus. The last, indeed, preceded 
Phrynichus, but merely in the burlesques of the 
rude Thespian >tage ; the example of Phryni- 
chus had now directed his attention to the new 
species of drama, but without any remarkable 
talent for its cultivation. Pratinas, the contem- 
porary of JEschylus, did not long attempt to vie 


\ 1 1 j 

book with hit mighty riral in his own line* ib-eur- 
Im , ring lo the old satyr-chorus, In- reduced it- im- 
11 • measured buffooneries into a regular and - 
metic form ; lie preserved 1 1 1 # * mytholog 
tale, :ukI converted it iato in srtistical burlesque* 
Thui invention, delighting the multitude, i 
adapted an ancient entertainment to tin- new and 
mora critical taate, beeame ao popular that it 
was usually associated with t! d\ ; 

when the last becoming a solemn and g 
spectacle, the |><><t exhibited a trilogy (or three 
tragedies) to hi- mighty audience, while the sa- 

t\ric invention of Pratinas closed the whole, 
and answered the purpose of our modern farce.f 
Of tlii— olaaa of the Grecian drama but i 
cimen remains, in the Cyclops of Euripides. It 
is probable that the birth, no less than the 
genius, of ./Eschylus enabled hiru with greater 
facility to make the imposing and costly addi- 
tions to the exhibition, which the nature of the 
poetry demanded — since, while these improve- 
ments were rapidly proceeding, the poetical 
fame of .ZEschylus was still uncrowned. Nor 

* Out of fifty plays, thirty-two were satyrical. — Suidas in 

■j- The Tetralogy was the name given to the fourfold exhi- 
bition of the three tragedies, or trilogy, and the Satyric 


was it till the fifteenth year after his first exhibi- book 
tion that the sublimest of the Greek poets ob- (MU , 
tained the ivy chaplet, which had moceeded to _^ 
the goat and the ox, as the prize of the tragic 
contests. In the course of a few years, a regular 
stage, appropriate scenery and costume, me- 
chanical inventions and complicated Ma- 
chinery, gave fitting illusion to the ten 
sentation of gods and men. To the mono- 
logue of Phrynichus, iEschyluj added a second 
actor;* he curtailed the choruses, connected 

them with the main Story, and, more important 

* Yet iii T.-cliyl us there are sometimes more than i 
sj tat hi it</ actors on tlu- stage,--- H at one time in the I'hoephori, 
Cly temnestra, nothing of] v\ho 

is sik-nt,) and again in the same pity, I and 

Clytemnestra ; also in the Eumenides, Ajh)11o, Minerva, 

It is truly observed, BoWTtT , that these plays m 
written after Sophocles had introduced the third actor.' Any 
number of mutes might be admitted, not only as guards 
but even as more important personages. Thus, in the 
Prometheus, the \ery opening of the play exhibits to us the 
demons of Strength and Force, the god Vulcan, and Prome- 
theus himself; but the dialogue is confined to Strength and 

1 The Orestean tetralogy was exhibited B.C. 458, only 
two years before the death of -Fsehylus, and ten \ears after 
Sophocles had gained his first prize. 



than all eke, reduced to simple bnl systematic 
chat, ralaty the progress and development el a poem, 
1L which do longer had for its almost obyed 
please the ear, or divert the fancy, bnl swept oi 
its mighty and irresistible march, t<> bet 
passion alter pa— ion, and spread it- empire i 

llir whole sonl. 

An itinerant platform was succeeded by a re- 
gular theatre of wood — the theatre of wood by 
a splendid edifice, which is said to have held no 

lest an audience than thirty thousand persons.* 
Theatrical contests became a matter of national 
and universal interest. These contests OCCUm d 
thrice a year, at three several festivals of 
Bacchus. f But it was at the great J)ion\ 
held at the end of March and commencement of 
April, that the principal tragic contests took 
place. At that period, as the Athenian drama 

* The celebrated Temple of Bacchus ; built after the 
wooden theatre had given way beneath the multitude as- 
sembled to witness a contest between Pratinas and ^Eschylus. 

f 1st. The rural Dionysia, held in the country districts 
throughout Attica, about the beginning of January. 2nd. 
The Lenaean, or Anthesterial, Dionysia, in the end of 
February and beginning of March, in which principally oc- 
curred the comic contests ; and the grand Dionysia of the 
city, referred to in the text. Afterwards dramatic per- 
formances were exhibited also, in August, during the Pana- 


increased in celebrity, and Athens herself in re- B00K 
nown, the city was filled with visitors, not 
only from all parts of Greece, but. almost from n. 
every land in which the Greek civilization un- 
known. The state took the theatre under its 
protection, as a solemn and sacred institu- 
tion. So anxious were the people to con- 
wholly to the Athenian name t he glory of 
the spectacle, that at the great Dionvsia no fo- 
reigner, nor even any metoecus, (or alien settler,) 
was permitted to dance in the choruses. The 
chief archon presided over the performance 

to him was awarded the selection of tin- candi- 
dates tor the prize. Those ohotefl wen- allowed 
three actors* by lot and a chorus the expense of 
which was undertaken by the State, and iinpo-, 'I 
upon one of the principal peraOOl of ( aeli tribe, 
called choragus. Thus, on one OOCaatOO, The- 
mistoehs was the choragus to a tragedy by Phrv- 
nichus. The immense theatre, crowded bv thou- 
sands, tier above tier, bench upon bench, was open 
to the heavens, and commanded, from the sloping 
hill on which it was situated, both land and sea. 
The actor apostrophized no mimic pasteboard, 
but the wide expanse of Nature herself— the 
living sun, the mountain air, the wide and visi- 

* That is when t/mt actors became admitted on the 

30 ATIII \ 

hook bleiEgaean. All was proportioned to the gigantic 
•Clle Of the theatre, and the might 
M. the audience. The form WOJ artificially en- 
larged md heightened ; maeki of exquisite art 

and beauty brought before tlie audience the 
ideal images of tlieir BCnlptUied godsend he: 
while (most probably) mechanical invention! 

earned the tones of the roice throughout the 
various tun of the theatre. The exhibition! 

tuok place in the open tnd the Limited 

length of the plays permitted the performance of 

probahly no less than ten or twelve before the 

- « 1 1 i i i «_i' of the sun. The Banctity of 
origin, and the mythological nature of their 
stories, added something of religions solemnity 

to these spectacles, which were opened by ce- 
remonial sacrifice. Dramatic exhibitions, at 
hast for a considerable period, were not, as 
with us, made liacknied by constant repeti- 
tion. They were as rare in their recur- 
rence as they were imposing in their effect ; nor 
was a drama, whether tragic or comic, that had 
gained the prize, permitted a second time to be 
exhibited. A special exemption was made in 
favour of iEschylus, afterwards extended to 
phocles and Euripides. The general rule was 
necessarily stimulant of renewed and unceasing 
exertion, and was, perhaps, the principal cause 


of the almost miraculous fertility of the Atlie- B0 .9 K 

J in. 

ni an dramatists. chap 

VI. On the lower benches of the semi-circle IL 
sat the archons and magistrates, the Mttl 
and priests; while apart, but in seats equally 
honoured, the gaze of the audience was attract 
from time to time, to the illustrious >n 
whom the fame of their poets and their city had 
brought to the Dionysia of the Athenians. The 
youths and women* had their separate divisioi 
the rest of the audience awe ranged according 
to their tribes, while the upper galleriet w 
filled by the miacaUaneom and impatient popn- 


In the Orchestra, a spare K-lt by the >emi- 
circular benches, with wings stretching to the 
right and left before the scene, l a small squaiv 
platform served as the altar, to which moved the 
choral dances, still retaining the attribut. - of 
their ancient sanctity. The coryplueus, or leader 
of the chorus, took part in the dialogue M the 

* For it is sufficiently clear that women were admitted to 
the tragic performances, though the arguments against their 
presence in comic plays preponderate. This admitted, 
the manners of the Greeks may he sufficient to prove that, 
as in the arena of the Retain games, they were divided from 
the men ; as, indeed, is indirectly intimated in a passage of 
the Gorgias of Plato. 



(ii \r 

representative oftb 

lerera] of tin- Dumbei ted into excite 

1L million- by the paction of tin- pi But the 

principal duty of the Chorui was to diversify the 
dialogue by hymm ami dirges, to the music 
of flutea, while, in dance* far more ertftd dm 
t h oae now existent, they r ep re se nted by their 

mo\.inenN tli.' emotions that tl. 

— tlms bringing, as it pare, into harmony 
of action the poetry of language. Arch; 
tural embellishmenti of -tour, repreaentin 
palace, irith throe entrances, tin- centre one im- 
propriated to royalty, the other- to subordinate 
rank, usually icrred i«»r tin- scene. But at tii; 
when tin- plot demanded a different locality, 
scenes painted with the utmost art and < 
easily substituted ; nor were wanting tin- mo- 
dern contrivances of artificial lightning ami 
thunder — the clouds for the gods — a variety of 
inventions for the sudden apparition of* demon 
agents, whether from above or below, — and all 
the adventitious and effective aid which me- 
chanism lends to genin-. 

VII. Thus summoning before us the external 

■ Schlegel says truly and eloquently of the Chorus — "that 
it was the idealized spectator" — " reverberating to the actual 
spectator a musical and lyrical expression of his own emo- 


character of the Athenian drama, the vast au- hook 
diesce, the unroofed and enormous theatre, the (HU> 

actors themselves enlarged by art above the J^ 
ordinary proportions of men, the solemn and 
sacred subject* from which its form and spirit 
were derived, we turn to iEschylns, and be- 
bold at once the fitting creator <>i" it- grand 
and ideal personifications. 1 have said thai 
Homer was his original ; but B more intel- 
lectual age than that of the (Jreeian epic 
had arrived, and with .K-cliylus, philosophy 
passed into poetry. The dark doetrine of I 
talitv imparted its stern and awful interest so 
the narration of event*- men were deKneaa 

not as mere self-acting and self-willed mortals, 

hut as the agents of a destiny inevitable and 
unseen — the god- themselves are no longer the 

gods of Homer, entering into the sphere of 
human action for petty motives, ami for indivi- 
dual purposes— drawing their grandeur, not from 
the part they perform, hut from the descripti. 
of the poet ; — they appear now as the orach's or 
the agent- of Fate they are visitors from 
another world, terrihle and ominou- from the 
warnings which they convey. Homer is the 
creator of the Material poetry, JEschyhlS of the 
Intellectual. The corporeal and animal suf- 
ferings of the Titan in the Epic hell become 

34 \mi\ 

hook txalted by Tragedy into the portrait of dm 

Fortitude defying physical Anguiah. The Pro- 
ii. metheus of JEschylui ig the spirit of ■ 

disdainfully Bubjected t«> the miafortunet of a 
man. in reading this wonderful perfonat 
which in pore and tnatained mblimity ii perhaa 
unrivalled in the literature of the world, ere 

lit entirely <»f the cheerful Hellenic worship; 
and yet it is in \ain that the learned attemj 
trace il and mysterious in. tapir 

any old lymbotica] religion of the East. M 
probably,whatever theological system it ■hadowa 
forth, was rather the gigantic conceptioa of the 
j>oct himself, than the Imperfect revival of amy 
forgotten creed, or the poetical disguise of any 
existent philosophy. However this !»«• it would 
certainly seem, that, in tins majestic ptctui 
t\w dauntless enemy of Jupiter, punished only 
for his benefits to man, and attracting all OUT 
sympathies by his courage ami his benevolence, 
is conveyed something of disbelief or defiance 
of the creed of the populace — a suspicion from 
which iEschylus was not free in the judgment 
of his contemporaries, and which is by no means 
inconsonant with the doctrines of Pythagoras. 

VIII. The conduct of the fable is as follows : 
— Two vast demons, Strength and Force, ac- 
companied by Vulcan, appear in a remote plain 


of earth, — an unpeopled desert. There, on I MOI 
sterile and lofty rock, hard by the sea, Prome- f 

theus is chained by Vulcan — " a reward for bjfl ^_ 

disj)osition to be tender to mankind. "' The di 
of this doom is cast far hack in the earl: 

dawn of time, and Jupiter hai hut just com- 
menced his reign. While Vulcan binds him, 

Prometheus utters no sound— it is Vulcan, the 
agent of his punishment, that alone complains. 

Nor is it till the dread task is done, and the mi- 
nisters of Jupiter have retired, that "the god, 
unawed by the wrath of ' bursal forth 

with liis grand apostrophe — 

•■ ( ) Air divine 10 

Nf sources of the Kivcrs, ami yt Win 
That dimple o'er old Ocean like hi* sniiK - 
Mother ot 'all --() llarth ! and thou the orb, 

All-seoini:, of the Sun, behold and \w. 

What I. a god, from the item godi endure. 

When shall my doom be o'er > me 

The Future hides no riddle — nor can 
Come unprepared! It tits me then to brtTe 
That which must be : tor what ean turn aside 
The dark COUTM of the trrim \\ 

While thus Boliioquizing, the air becomes 




book fragrant with odours, and faintl vial thn 

(i| ^ rustling of approaching winge. The Daughteea 
• '• of Ocean, aronaed from their grots below, 
eeane to eonaole the Titan. Th r many 

eomplaints against the dynast} of Jove, Prome* 
thru-, oomfbrti bimaelf by the prediction thai the 
Olympian shall hereafter require I 

;mil that, until himself released from hi> bond- 
age, be will im aal to bii tyrant the dan* 
ger thai monacal bii realm ; for the ranqniahad 
ii b< re described as of a mighuu than the 
rietor, and to him are bared the mysterii 
the future, whicli to Jupiter are denied. The 
triumph of Jupiter li the conquest of brut 
over knowledge. 

Prometheus then narrates how, by means of 
his eoun-els, Jupiter had gained bii -ci-ptrc, and 
the ancient Saturn and his partisans been 
whelmed beneath the abyss of Tartarus — how he 
alone had interfered with Jupiter to prevent the 
extermination of the human race, (whom aJom 
the celestial king disregarded and condemned) — 
how he had imparted to them fire, the seed of 
all the arts, and exchanged in their breasts the 
terrible knowledge of the future, for the be- 
guiling flatteries of hope : and hence his punish- 

At this time Ocean himself appears : he en- 


deavours unavailingly to persuade the Titan to book 

submission to Jupiter. The great spirit of Pro- 

. - i chap. 

metheus, and his consideration tor others, are II. 

beautifully individualized in his aotwen to hi- 

consoler, whom he warns not to incur the wrath 

of the tyrant, by sympathy with the afflicted. 

Alone again with the Oceanides, the latf 

burst forth in fresh strain! of pity. 

"The wide earth echoei wailm. 

Stately and antique were thy fallen i 
The wide earth waileth tli« 

Lol from the holy AJUUB dwelling-])!.. 
Fall fnr ■ florlhcari'nnrorigi. thn mortals' murmuring tears, 
Tliey mourn within the (olehian land. 
The Virgin and the warrior daughn I 
And tar remote, the Scythian hand. 
Around the broad Maotian fflaftl 
And they who hold in Caucasus their town, 
Arabia's martial flower 
Hoarse-clamouring 'midst sharp rows, of barbed spi 

One have 1 seen with equal torture* riven — 
An equal god ; — in adamantine chains 

Ever anil evermore 
The Titan Atlas, crush'd, sustains 

The mighty mass of mighty Heaven, 
And the whirling cataracts roar, 


hook With ■ cliinx 

And the depth thai 

II. And from viinhs thai tin- earth arc under. 

Black ffadei is beard in thoack 

While (ruin the founts of \\ hite-w;i\ ( d riv< Tl Mo* 

Melodioui eorrowt, vailing with his i 

Prometheus, in hi! answer, -till farther details 

the benefit! be had conferred on men be tiro- 

• himself their elevation to intellect and 

reason.* lie proceed! darkly tC dwell on tin- 

power of Necessity, guided by " the triform fi 
and 1 1 1 * - unforgetral Furies," whom l< 
lie sovereign over Jupiter himself. II«- declares 
that Jupiter cannot i his doom : " Hi- 

doom," ask the daughter! of Ocean, " i- it not 
evermore to reign?" — " That thou mayst not 
learn," replies the prophet ; " and in the pre- 
servation of this secret depends my future 

The rejoinder of the chorus is singularly beau- 
tiful, and it is with a pathos not common to 
iEschylus that they contrast their present mourn- 
ful strain with that which they poured 

* In this speech he enumerates, amongst other benefits, 
that of Numbers, 'the prince of wise inventions' — one of the 
passages in which JF.schylus is supposed to betray hi 
thagorean doctrines. 


" What time the lilence erst was broken, HOOK 

Around the baths, and o'er the bed 


To which, won well by many a soi't-lo\e token, II 

And hymn'd by all the music of delight. 
Our Ocean-sister, bright 
llesione, was led 1'* 

At the end of this choral son^ appears 1<>, per- 
forming' her mystic pilgrimage.* The utter « 

ami despair of 1<> are finely contrasted w itli 
the stern spirit of Prometheus, Her intro- 
duction gives rise t<> those ancestral and tra- 
ditionary allusions to which t! 
attached. In prophesying her fate, Promethi 
enters into much beautiful descriptive poetry, 
ami commemorates the lineage of the Argive 

kino-s. After lo's departure, l'ronietheu- renews 
his defiance to Jupiter, and bis stern prophec: 

that the son of Saturn shall l»e " hailed from bis 

realm, a forgotten kin In the midst ofth. 

weird denunciations, Mercury arrives, charged by 

* It is greatly disputed whether lo was represented on 
the stage as transformed into the aetual shape of a heifer, 
or merely accursed with a \iMonar\ tu-n/.y, in whieh she be- 
lieves in the transformation. It is with great reluctanee 
that 1 own it seems to me not possible to explain Bwaj cer- 
tain expressions without supposing that lo appeared on the 
stage at least partially transformed. 

hook Jupiter to It-arn the nature of that danger which 
Prometheus predict! to him. The Titan bitterly 


ii. ami haughtily defies tin- tlmats tad warn 

of tin- In ral(l,;m(l i-xnlt-. that \\liat<-\< rbehlS tor- 
tures, he ii at Lend uniimrinl. to be afflicted, l>ut 
not to die. Mercury at length <l<-|»a 
menace of Jupiter i- fulfilled — tin- pun i-li k 
is consummated snd, amidst norm and earth" 
qnakcj i»«>tli rock ami prisoner ere struck i»\ the 
lightnings of tin- god int<> the deep al»vss. 

•The earth i< made to nil. and rambling •>>• 
Bellowing it rolls, tin- thunder's gathering urath ! — 

And the fierce Bree flare livid; and iloasj 

Tlii' rock- tin- t-ddii- of the sands whirl high, 

Home by tlie hurricane, and all the blasts 

Of all the winds leap forth — each hurtling each — 

Met in the wildncssof a ghastly war, 

The dark floods blended with the swooping heaven. 

It comes — it comes !— on me it speeds— the Storm, 

The rushing onslaught of the Thunder-god ; 

O, majesty of earth — my solemn mother ! 

And thou that through the universal void, 

Circlest sweet light, all blessing; — Earth and Ether, 

Ye, I invoke, to know the wrongs I suffer." 

IX. Such is the conclusion of this unequalled 


drama, epitomized somewhat at undue length, book 
in order to show the reader how inucli the 

* JiAr. 

philosophy that had awakened in tie Jii_ 

of Solon now actuated the creation! of poe- 
try. Not that /K-chvlus, like Euripides, 
deals in didactic sentences rod oracular spk 

risnis. He rightly held Mich pedantries of tlit- 
closet, foreign to the tragic genius. 4 Hi> phi- 
losophy is iii the spirit, and not the diction 
his works — in vast conceptions, not laconic 
maxims. He dor- not preach, hut he in-pi' 

The "Prometheus" i- perhaps the greatest moral 

poem in the world — .sternly and loftik intel- 
lectual — and, smidsl it- darker and IflSS pal- 
pable allegories, presenting t<> as tin- mperiority 

of an immortal being to all mortal Miticrin. 

Regarded merely as poetry, the conception of the 

Titan of ABschylus ha- no parallel except in the 

Fiend of Milton. But perhaps the repre-eiitation 
of a benevolent spirit afflicted, hut not SCCnn 

— conquered, hut not subdued by a power, 

than which it is elder, ami wiser, and loftier 
yet more sublime than that of an evil demon 
writhing under the penance deservedly incurred 
from an irresistible God. The one is inten-elv 
moral — at once the more moral and the more 
tragic, because the sufferings are not d e se rved , 
\ a. JBm*. 

42 ATHENS : 

boom and therefore the defiance commandi our lym- 


pathv a- well M our ;i\\v : hut the Other II l>ut 

"• the picture of ■ righteom doom, borne i»\ 
despairing though stubborn will ; it affords no 
itemenl to our courage, and forbidi at one.- 
our admiration and our pity. 

\. 1 <lo not pfopoi mliu t the rend 

length through the other tragediei of /Eechy- 
lus ;— seven are left to at, to afford the n 
striking examples which modern or ancient 

literature can produce of what perhaps Kl tin- 
true theory of the si i;umk, vi/. the elevating 

the imagination by mean- of the passions, for a 
moral end. 
Nothing can be more grand end bnprei 

than the opening of the " A-aineinnon.'' with 

the solitary aratchman on the tower, who for 

ten long years has watched nightly for the 
heacon fires that are to announce tin; fall of 
Ilion, and who now beholds them blaze at 
last. The description which Clytemnestra g 

of the progress of these beacon fires from Troy 
to Argos is, for its picturesque animation, one 
of the most celebrated in iEschvlus. The fol- 
lowing lines will convey to the general reader 
a very inadequate reflection, though not an un- 
faithful paraphrase, of this splendid passage.* 
* It is the orthodox custom of translators to render the 



Clytemnestra lias announced to the Chorus the 
capture of Troy. The Chorus, half incredulous, 
demand what messenger conveyed the intelli- j£ " 
gence. Clytemnestra replies — 

A gleam — a gleam— from Ida's height. 

By the Fire-god sent, it came ; — 
From watch to watch it leapt that li^ht. 
t rider rode the Plane I 
It shot through the startled--k\ , 

And the torch of that biasing glory 
Old Leinnos caught on high. 

On its holy promontu 
Ami sent it on, the jocund sign. 
To Athos, Mount of Jove divine. 
Wildly the while, it rose from the i- 
So that the might of the journeying Light 

Skimmed o\er the heck of the gleaming hrhu 

Farther and faster speeds it on, 
Till the watch that keep Macistus steep — 
it hurst like a hia/.ing Sun ! 
Doth Macistus ilei B 
On his tower-elad steep > 
No ! rapid and red doth the wilil tire sweep ; 

dialogue of the Greek plays in blank verse, but in this in- 
stance the whole animation and rapidity of the original would 
he utterly lost in the stitt' construction and protraeted rhythm 
of that metre. 

1 1 


BOOK It flashes afur. on tin- wayward 


Ol" the wild I.urijtn-. tlit- ni-lnn^' l>< -am ! 

"• It rOUMI the light on MeMtpioo 

And tin \ ft i d it- hivath with tlu- withered heath. 
Uut it in.i\ i 

I .in.i\ — awsj — 

It hound-, in its Iridirninu' Bight 

Silrnt ;iud -><>on, 
I.i dencd moon, 

It passes in sheen, Asopu- ltcih,* 
And hursts OH ( itli.i •run gl 
The wardur wakes to the Signal-rays, 
And it swoops from the hill with a broader bll 
On — on the fury (J lory rode — 
Thy lonely la I' pis, gloved — 

To Megara's Mount it came ; 
They feed it again, 
And it streams amain — 
A giant beard of Flame ! 
The headland cliffs that darkly down 
O'er the Saronic waters frown, 
Are pass'd with the Swift One's lurid stride, 
And the huge rock glares on the glaring tide, 
With mightier march and fiercer power 
It gained Arachne's neighbouring tower — 
* Viz. the meadows around Asopus. f /Egiplancton, 



Thence on our Arrive roof its rest it won, BOOK 


Of Ida's fire the long-descended Son ! ,.,.».> 

Bright Harbinger of glory and of j. ll - 

So first and last with equal honour crown'd, 
In solemn feasts the race-torch circles round. — 
And these my heralds '.—this m I 

Lo! while we breathe, the victor lord- <n < 

Stalk, in stern tumult, through the halls of Troy !"• 

In one of the earlier choruses, in which if 
introduced en episodical allusion to the abduc- 
tion of Helen, occur- one of fchoie toA |' 
Bagefl so rare in ZBtchylus, nor Leaf exquil 
than rare. The Chorus Mippote the niin-tivU 

of Menelaoa tlm> to Lament the (an of Helen \ 

"And woe the halls, and woe the cli.. 

And woe the bridal bed ! — 
And woe bet >tej)s— for once she loved 

The lord whose love she tied ! 
Lo! where, dishonour yet unknown, 
He sits — nor deems his Helen rlown, 

* To make the sense of this detached passage more com- 
plete, and conclude the intelligence which the queen mean> to 
convey, the concluding line in the test is borrowed from the 
next speech of C'lytemnestra — following immediately altera 
brief and exclamatory interruption of the Chorus. 



Hook iless and \oieeles* 

All desert, but lie feels it not | 

II. Ah ! soon a! - and mourn 

The form beyond the ocean bor 
Shall start the lonely king ! 
And thoui;ht shall fill the lost ones room, 
And darkly through the |»alaee gloom 
Shall stalk a ghostly thi 
Hi statues meet, as round they rise, 
The leaden st.i less eyes. 

Where is their aneien' - — 

Why loathe his looks the breathing stum 

Alas! the foulness of disgrace, 

Hath swept the \'emis from hi 

And visions in the mournful night. 

Shall dupe the heart to false i\v'.. 

A &!m and melaneholy ; 

For nought with sadder joy is fraught, 

Than things at night by dreaming brought, 

The Wish d for and the Holy. 

Swift from the solitary side, 

The Vision and the Blessing glide, 

Scarce welcomed ere they sweep, 

Pale, bloodless, dreams, aloft 

On wings unseen and soft, 

Lost wanderers gliding through the paths of Sleep." 

* i*. & Menelaus, made by grief like the ghost of his 
former self. 


But the master-terror of this tragedy is in book 
the introduction of Cassandra, who accompan 
Agamemnon, and who, m the very hour ot his u. 
return, amidst the pomp and joy that welcome 
th<' " kino- of men/' ii lelsed with die prophetic 
inspiration, and shrieks oat those amino 
warnings, fated ever to be heard in rain. It 
is the who recalls to the Chorus, to tin- shud- 
dering audience, that it ii the house of 
the long-fated Atridss, to which their d 
seendanl has returned — " that human shamble 
liouse — that bloody floor — that dwelling, al>- 
horred l>y Heaven, privy to so many horrors 
against the most lacred ties :" die doom j 
hangi over the inexpiable threshold, the eu 
passes from generation t»> generation ; Aga- 
memnon is the victim of hi 

Recalling the inhuman banquet served by 
Atreus to Th\ est - of his own murdered children, 
she starts from the mangled spectres on the 

threshold : 

6 \e those infants crouching by the Hour, 

Like phantom dream, pale nursHnge, thai have periah'd 
My kindred hand] 

Gradually her ravings become clear and 
clearer, until at last she scents the 4 blood-drip- 





booi ping slaughter within, a ▼•pom 

trill as from i cbtrnel bouse— her own t 

which she ! al hand, begins t<» overpov 

li, r — ber mood softens, and she enten the pa* 
lace, ahout to become her tomb, with th 
in u hull frantic terror has yielded to solemn 

and pathetic resignation : 

u Alaafor> ! what their 

A little shadow sweep* it from tin- earth ' 

And il tlit \ suffer — why, the Fatal Hour 

the record like a moistened 
And blots it out ; methinkt (kit A///-/ loi 
Affect* me deepest- H ,11 ' 

Scarcely has the prophetess withdrawn than 
ire hear behind the scene the groans of the mur- 
dered king, the palace behind i d, and 

* The words in Italics attempt to convey paraphrastic-ally 
I new construction of a sentence which has puzzled the com- 
mentators, and met with many and contradictory interpreta- 
tions. The original literally is — " I pity the last the most." 
Now, at first it is difficult to conjecture why those whose 
adversity is over, " blotted out w ith the moistened sponge," 
should be the most deserving of compassion. But it seems 
to me that Cassandra applies the sentiments to herself — She 
pities those whose career of grief is over, because it is her 
own lot which she commiserates, and by reference to which 
she individualizes a general reflection. 


Clytemnestra is standi ng, stern and lofty, by the Boo* 

dead body of her lord. The critic* have dwelt 

too much on the character of Clytemnestra— ll 

it is that of Cassandra Which if the mast 
piece of the tragedy. 

XI. The story, which is ipread throughout 
three plays (forming a complete trilogy,) con- 
tinues in the opening of the Choephori, with 
Orestes mourning over hi< father'- tomb. If 
Clytemneetra baa Furnished would-be critic- 

with a comparison With Lady Macbeth for n<> 
other reason than that one murdered her hus- 
band, and the other persuaded her hu>band to 
murder somebody else; so may with 

more justice be called the Hamlet of the < i 

but though the character itself of On nor 

so complex and profound a> that of Hamlet, nor 

the play bo full of philosophical beauties as the 
modern tragedy, yel it has pa* qually 

pathetic, and more sternly and terribly lublin 

The vague horror which in the commencement 

of the play prepares us for the c atastr ophe by 

the dream of l'lyteinne>tra — how a -erpent lay 
in swaddling clothes like an infant, and 
placed it in her breast, ami it drew blood ; — the 
brief and solemn answer of Orestes — 

•• Man's visions never CQOM to him in vain;" — 

50 - A'nii 

boov the manner in which the irricide in- 

terrupts the divam, so tlmt as in Macbeth tli«- 
ii. prediction inspires the deed thai it foretelli ; 
the <l;tiiiitlcss reeolation <»f Clytemnestra, when 
ihe heart, in the dark layingi of her lervani, 
that " tin- dead are da) ing the living," i > . that 
through the iword of < Orestes, Agamemnon i^ 
avenged on /Egisthus,) calls tor a weapon, p 
to the Last, wiehing onlj to 

*• Know which *hull be the victor or the naquiibed — 
Sisce that the crisii of the present ;" — 

the sudden change from fierce to tendei 
Orestes bursts in, and tliinking only of her 
guilty lover, she shrieks forth, 

"Ah ! thou art then no more, beloved I Igisthua ;" — 

the advance of the threatening son, the 
apostrophe of the mother as she bares her 
bosom — 

" Hold ! and revere this breast on which so oft 
Thy young cheek nestled— cradle of thy sleep, 
And fountain of thy being ;" — 

the recoil of Orestes — the remonstrance of 
Pylades -the renewed passion of the avenger — 


the sudden recollection of her dream, which the rook 
murderess scarcely utters than it Beemi to confirm 
Orestes to its fulfilment, and be pe ad c n . 

slays her by the side of the adulterer ;— all th. 

ages are full of so noble a poetry, that I do 
not think the parallel situations in Hamlet equal 
their sustained and solemn grandeur. But the 
sublimest effort of the imagination is in the con- 
dition. While Orestes is yet justifying the 
deed that avenged a father, and con- 

1 thoughts gradually creep over him. .\>> 
ri/is sir them but his own — there they are, M the 
(iorgons, in vestments of -able, tin i 
dropping loathly blood !" Slowly they multiply, 
they approach, still invisible but to their prey — 
"the angry hell-hounds of his mother." He 
flies, the fresh blood yet dripping from his 
hands. This catastrophe — the sudden appari- 
tion of the Furies ideally imaged forth to the 
parricide alone — seems to me greater in concept 

tion than the supernatural agency in Hamlet. 
The visible ghost is less aw ful than the unseen 

The plot is continued through the third pi. 
of the trilogy, (the Eumenides,) and out of 
iEschylus himself, no existing tragedy presents 
so striking an opening — one so terrible and so 
picturesque. It is the temple of Apollo at 

e 2 

52 vin 


(ii \r 

Delphi. The priestess, after a short in\ 
tion, enten the sacred edifice, but suddenly 

ii. turns. "A man,"' ill tin- marble 

;i suppliant to tie- god hi- bloody hat 
hold a drawn fword, ami a long branch of olive. 
Bui around the men ileep a irondroui an. I 
ghastly troop, not of women, but of tin 
womanlike, y»t fiendish ; harpies they seem", but 
are not ;— black-robed ami i ami their 

breath is loud ami baleful, ami theii Iron 

venom— and their garb i- neither meet tor the 
-brines of God, nor the habitations of men. 
Never have I seen, (saith the Pythian,] a nation 
which nurtured such a race.'' ( heered by Apollo, 
Orestes flies while the dread Sisters yet -hep ; — 
and now within the temple we behold the Furies 
scattered around , and a pale and lofty shape, tin- 
ghost of Clytenmestra, gliding on the <-tage, 
awakens the agents of her vengeance. They 
break forth as they rouse themselves, " Seize — 
seize — seize." They lament — they bemoan tin- 
departure of their victim, they expostulate with 
Apollo, who expels them from his temple. The 
scene changes ; Orestes is at Athens, he 
pleads his cause before the temple of Minerva. 
The contest is now shared by gods ; Apollo 
and the Furies are the pleaders — Pallas is the 
umpire, the Areopagites are the judges. Pallas 



fcastfl in her vote in favour of Orestes—the lots book 


are equal— he is absolved ;— the Furies, at first 

enraged, are soothed by Minerva, and, invited n. 

to dwell in Athens, pour bleasinga on tin: land. 

A sacred but joyous procession crowns the whole. 

Thus the consummation of the trilogy ii cheerful, 

though each of the two former piecei fa tragic ; 

and the poet artfully conduces the poem to the 

honour of his native Athens, and the venerable 


Recrardinff the three as one harmonious 

and united performance, altogether not so long 
as one play of Shakspeaiv -. tiny are cer- 
tainly not surpassed in gTOatnaai of thought, 
in loftiness of conception, and in Mlltained 
rigour of execution, by any poem in the coin- 
paas of literature ; nor, observing- their simple 
but compact symmetry as ■ whole, shall we do 
right to subscribe to those who deny to .Ksehylu> 
the skill of the artist, while they grant him 
the faculty of the poet. The ingenious Schlegel 
attributes to these tragedies symbolical inter- 
pretations, but to my judgment with signal ill- 
success. These four tragedies— the Prometheus, 
the Agamemnon, the (hoephori, and the Eu- 
nienides, are in grandeur immeasurably superior 
to the remaining? tlnv 


hook \ II. Of these l.i-t, tli iin«t Tin 


the best. The subject was one peculiarly in- 

n. t crcsti ng I the War of tl, a was 

tin- earliest record of a league amongst the ( 
ciin princes, and of an enterprise carried oi 
with ■ regular and systematic design. The 
c a tas tr ophe ol brothers falling by each 

others hand i- terrible and tragic, and am< 
tli«- moat national of the Grecian legends. The 
fierce and martial spirit of the warrior poet runs 
throughout the play ; bis descriptions trc ani- 
mated as with the seal and passion of battle; 
the chorus of Theban virgins paint in the i 
glowing colours tie- rush of the adverse hosl 
the prancing of the ch and of their 

hoofs, " rumbling as a torrent lashing tb 
clifis ; " w k of tli<" In a\ 

the shrill whiz of the javelin-, " maddening the 
very air" — the showers of stones crash! 
the battlements — the battering at the mighty 
gates — the uproar of the city — the yells of ra- 
pine — the shrieks of infants " strangled by the 
bubbling blood." Homer himself never accumu- 
lated more striking images of horror. The de- 
scription of Tydeus is peculiarly Homeric — 

" Three shadowy crests, the honours of his helm, 
Wave wild, and shrilly from his buckler broad 



The brazen bells ring terror. On the shield BOOK 

He bears his haughty ensign— typed by star, ^^^ 

Gleaming athwart the sky, and in the m'uU 1L 

Glitters the royal Moon-the 1 0* 

Fierce in the glory of his arms, his vokc 
Roars by the river banks ; and drunk with war 
He pants, as some wild charger, when the trump 
Clangs ringing, as he rushes on the foe." 

The proud, dauntless, and warlike spirit of 
Etcocles, which is designed and drawn with in. 

conceivable power, ifl beautifully characters 
in his reply to the above description : 

Man hath no armour, war hath no array, 

At which this heart can tremble ;— no des 

Nor blazonry of battle can indict 

The wounds they menace ;— crots and clashing bell* 

Without the spear, are toothless, and the night, 
Wrought on yon buckler with the stars of heawn, 
Prophet, perehance, his doom ; and if dark Death 
Close round his eyes, are but the ominous signs 
Of the black night that waits him." 

The description of each warrior stationed at 
each gate is all in the genius of Homer, closing 
as it does with that of Polvnices,the brother of the 

''' ITHJ 

7n. K , : H '-" 1 *»« ***>, whmU bean hi- mn, 

chap. Eteocl « bim*elf rewire to ocofront .\t first, io« 

"_'• deed, the latter breaks out in^^^i flmttifTflg wh|c|| 

denot€ ' , "' ■*• ; '"<l Uruggle of th, ibhomnfl 
M:,,l,,v i Mbodingi of bis own doom Hit before 
Mm, he foeli the ouisai of his are ire ripening 
totWrfruit, and thai the last storm i 
bnaak npou the house of CEdipot. Suddenly he 
chock* the impulse, lonaiUe of the pmet* 
the Chorus. II. paaiea on I H with hfm- 

wlf, through i proceai of thought which 8ha*> 
■peare oould do! hare suipaesed. He conj 
»P the image of that brother, hateful and ua 
&om iii&ncy to boyhood, from boyhood D] 
south-he assures himself thai justice would be 
forsworn if this foe should triumph-and rui 
«»n to his dread resoh 

I's I trill face this Harrior : who can boast 
A right to equal mine ? Chief against chief- 

against foe-and brother against brother. 
What, ho! my greaves, my spear, my armour pro 
Against this storm of stones ! My stand is chosen." 

Eteocles and his brother both perish in the 
unnatural strife, and the tragedy ends with the 
decree of the senators to bury Eteocles with due 
honours, and the bold resolution of Anyone 



(the sister of the dead) to defy the ordinance book 
which forbids a burial to Polynices — ^ 


" For mighty is the memory of the womb 

Prom which alike we sprung — a wretched mother !" 

The same spirit which glows through tin- 
" Seven against Thebes," is also visible in the 
" Persians," which, rather picturesque than dra- 
matic* is tragedy brought back to the ditliy- 
rambic ode. It portrays the defeat of \ 
and contains one of tin- most valuablf of histori- 
cal descriptions, in the Lines <l. voted U) the 
battle of Salainis. The ipecch of AtOSSS, the 

mother of Xerxes,) in which she enumerates the 
offerings to the shade «»t" Darius, i> exquisitely 

" The charms that soothe the dead i 

White milk, and lucid honey, pure-distill*d 

1»\ the wild bee— that uaftia a a n of the flowers ; 

The limpid droppings of the virgin fount, 

And this bright liquid from its mountain mother 

Borne fireeh the joy of the time-hallowed vine ; — 

The pale-green olive's odorous fruit, who- 

Live everlastingly — and these wreathed flowers, 

The smiling infants o' the prodigal earth." 

Nor is there lefts poetry in the invocation of the 


ftQOI ChorM>tOttosla*deof Darius whi.h -loulv rices 

( •ii.\i'. M , '"'- v < *"" , ' ,,1,|( - ,i,lt f, '«- p'irj.o-,- ior which t!,, ; 

"• monarch returns to earth b scarce! j m&eimi to 

justify his appearance, and docs MA -,-, m n, |„. 
in accordance with the power over our awe and 

terror which the pod usually command*. Di 
bear* the mis of bii warns the 

Perataiii tgainsi fnter faring with the Athenian- 
—tell- the mother to comfort tnd console her 
MB bids the chorni uhu disregard bit advice) 
give IhemselTes to mirth, erea though [g 
Miction, '• r<»r to tin- dead riches' are no edvaa« 
lege" -and so returns to hil repose, which 
seems very unnecessarily disturbed. 

"The Suppliants," which BchJegel plaosablj 
conjectures to bare been the intermediate pi 
of a trilogy, is chiefly remarkable si ■ proof of 
the versatility of the poet. All horror hai 
vanished from the scene ; the language is 
when compared with the usual diction of yEschv- 
lus ; the action is peaceful, and the plot ex- 
tremely simple, being merely the protection 
which the daughters of Danaus obtain at the court 
of Pelasgus from the pursuit of the sons of iEgvp- 
tus. The heroines of the play, the Danaides,make 
the chorus, and this serves to render the whole 
yet more than the Persians, a lyric rather than 
a tragedy. The moral of the play is homely and 


primitive, and seems confined to the incul- 
cation of hospitality to strangers, and the in- 
violable sanctity of the shrine. I do not kn<>\\ 
any passages in "The Suppliants" thai e<pial in 
poetry the more striking PONM ti " The Per- 
sians," or " The Seven against Thee 

XIII. Attempts hare been made to convey to 
modern readers a more familiar notion of 

ihylus by Comparisons with modern pe 
One critic likens him to Dante, another to 
Milton — but he resembles neither. No modern 
language can convey ■ notion of the wonderful 
Strength of his diction — no modern poet, of the 
stem sublimity of hi- conceptions. The French 
tragedians may give some weak reflection of 
Euripides or even of Sophocles, but none hi 
Ventured upon the sacred territory of the lather 
of the tragic drama. He defies all imitation. 
His genius ll BO near the \ bombast, that 

to approach his sublime is to rush into the ridi- 



I rhaps his mere diction would find a less feeble i 
blance in pamgci of Shell* ally in the Prometheus 

of that poet, than in any other poetiy existent. Hut his diction 
alone. His power is in concentration — the quality or'Shelley 
is dilluseness. The interest exeited by -Eschylus, even to 
those who can no longer sympathize with the ancient I 
nations, is startling, terrible, and intense — that excited by 

VI 111 


*£* ihyllM nrvry oner, i„ tftfl ,,! :iv . fa| ) ]; , V( . 

( . (m , eone down to eg, delineate! bv*, except i.\ 


riiprceeion or hro n regards the pension of I 
toamMtn fof £gu*mu.« Uwai emblem*] 
a new itate of loeic ty when BaripJ 
fl "' Phaxba end the Medea. Hi s p j ote 
worked ..i.t i.v the nmpletf end the feweel pot*, 
turns. Bot be l.a.l evidently me own theor 
art, and studied with care waeh ti;,-t> as 

appeared to him meet miking end impi 
Than, in the borleeqne oonteri betw. ,i iv . 

lus end Bnripidee, in the comedy of » The 
frtga/'the former ■ oemmred, not for too rude 
anagiect, hut for too elaborate a cultivation 
theatrical craft— such as introducing hie prin- 

Mu-lk-y is hnm and tedious. The intellectuality of 
Shell* destroyed, that of A^chyla, only B / hig 

command over the passions. 

* In the comedy of « The Frogs," Aristophanes make, it 
the boast of ^schylus, that he never drew a single woman 
influenced by love. Spanheim is surprised that Aristo- 
phanes should ascribe such a boast to the author of the 
"Agamemnon." But the love of Cly temnestra for ^gisthus 
« never drawn-never delineated. It is merely suggested 
and hmtedat,-a sentiment lying dark and concealed behind 
the motives to the murder of Agamemnon ostensibly brought 
forward, vaz. revenge for the sacrifice of Iphigenia, and 
jealousy oi Cassandra. 


cipal characters, his Niobe and Achilles,* with book 

. in. 

their faces hid, and preserving long- and obstU 

en \ i'. 

nate silence, in order by that suspense to sharpen li- 
the expectation of the audience. iEschylus, in 
fact, contrary to the general criticism, was as 
earnest and thoughtful an artist as Sopha 
himself. There was this difference, it i- true ; 
one invented the art and the other perfected. 
But the first requires as intense a study as the 
last; and they who talk of tl ge and un- 

tutored genius of iEschylus, an- no wiser thud 

the critics who applied the phfSJM of u native 
wood-notes wild '" to the consummate philosophy 
of l4 Hamlet," the anatomical I of 

''Othello," the delict try of " The 

Tempest.* 1 With respect t<» the Isj of 

livlus, ancient critics unite with the mo- 
dern in condemning the straining of hi- meta- 
phors, and the exaggeration of his images ; \ 
they a] tpear to me a necessary part of his ge- 
nius, and of the effed it produces. But no- 
thing- can be more unsatisfactory and inconclusive 
than the theory of Schlcgel, that such meta- 
phors and images, such rugged boldness and 
irregular fire, are the characteristics of a litera- 
ture in its infancy. On the contrary, as we 
have already seen, Phrynichus, the predecessor 

* In play* tott to us. 


book of /Ksclivlus, iiiiirh characterised by 

Htestnesi and harmony, bylui b) gran- 

ii. deal and headlong animation. In dot 


time, we have teen the cold claasic 

succeeded l>\ one full of the fault- which the 

German, eloquent bat superficial, would aacaibe 

to llie in fancy of literature. The diction of . I 
cbyku was the distinction of himself and not of 
hi* age; if it require an apology, Id m not - 

it in false, pretence- j if he had written ai 

Euripides, his diction would havi tally 

Martling. and his metaphors equally lofty. His 
genius was one of those which, in any age, can 
form an era, and not that which an era Hi 
rily forms, lie might have enriched his music 
from the strains of the Dorian lyres, but he re- 
quired only one poet to have lived hefore him'. 
The rest of the Greek dramatists required 
iEschylus — .Esehylus required only Homer. 
The poet is, indeed, the creator, not of images 
solely, but of men — not of one race of ideas and 
characters, but of a vast and interminable poste- 
rity scattered over the earth. The origin of 
what wonderful works, in what distant regions, 
in what various time, may be traced, step In- 
step, from influence to influence, till we arrive 
at Homer ! Such is the vitality of genius. The 
true spiritual transmigrator — it passes through all 



shapes— losing identity but not life— and kindred hook 
to the Great Intelligence, which is the -oul 


of matter — departing from one form only to ani- _^_ 
mate another. 


\ 7 11 


AR»sn,„s 1( ,s character an,, ,,,>,„.,s ,„,,«,„ wrm 
"»«■ «»"« LCI.ED ,„,. ■ 

M,SM * "" «~woi« nmmcLHiNciuiB 

MM "' ■"»" WLAWtOK rHBIR ,,„„„,, 


B °{>!< I. Whili the progress of th, drama, ami 
chap. the genius of JEachywa, contributed to the 

K rising renown of Athens, th,,v «,,,„,»,-, -,| on 
the surface of her external a&in two rival tod 

principal actors, of talents and designs so oppo- 
site, that it soon became evident, that the tri- 
umph of one could be only in the defeat of the 

Before the battle of Marathon, Aristides had 
attained a very considerable influence in Athens 
His birth was noble-his connexions wealthy— 
his own fortune moderate. He had been an 
early follower and admirer of Clisthenes the 
establisher of popular institutions in Athens 


after the expulsion of the Pisistratidce, but eo 

1 in. 

lie shared the predilections of many popular 

chieftains, and while opposing- the encroach- m 
ments of a tyranny, supported the p«>\\ 
of an aristocracy. The system of Lycurgui a 
agreeable to his stern and inflexible temper. 
His integrity was republican — his Loftiness of 
spirit was patrician. He had all the purit\ . 
the disinterestedness, and the fervour of a pa- 
triot — he had none of the suppleness or the j> 
sion of a demagogue ; on the contrary, he 
seems to have felt much of that high-spirited 
disdain of managing a people which is common 
to great minds conscious that they arc serring a 
people. His mannrrs were austt i< . and he 
rather advised than pcr>uadcd men to hil pur- 

potes. He pursued no tortuous policy, but 

marched direct to his object, fronting, and not 
undermining, the obstacle! in his path. Hi- 
reputation for truth and uprightness was prover- 
bial, and when some lines in .Eschylu> mere re- 
cited on the stage, implying that " to ln\ and 
not to seem, hi> wisdom was," the eyei of the 
spectators were fixed at once upon Aristi»; 
His sternness was only for principles — he had 
no harshness for men. Priding himself on im- 
partiality between friends and foes, he pleaded 
for the very person whom the laws obliged him 
voi. 11. F 

<;<; atiii vs 



hook tO protecilte ; and when oner, iii hi- i 

arbiter between two private persons, one of th.- 

id. parties said that his opponent had committed 
many injuries against Aristides, be rebuked liim 
DObly : " Tell m<- not," lie said, " of injur 
againsl myself* hut against thee. It if thy 
cause 1 am adjudging, and not my own."' It 
may be presumed, that with these linguist and 
exalted virtues, be did not leel to prevent 
the wound- they inflieted (1000 the lelf-loVS of 
others, and that the qualities of a -uperior 
mind were displayed frith the beating <rf 

I haughty spirit. He became the champion 

of the aristocratic party, and before the battle of 
Marathon, held the office of public treassm 
In this capacity Plutarch asserti that he 

subjected to an accusation by Themistocles, 
and even intimates that Themistocles him 
had been his predecessor in that honourable 
office.* But the youth of Themistocles contra- 

• I reject the traditions which make Aristides and The- 
mistocles rivals as boys, because chronology itself refutes 
them. Aristides must have been of mature age at the battle 
of Marathon, if he was the friend and follower of Clisthenes, 
one of the ten generals in the action, and archon in the fol- 
lowing year. But both Plutarch and Justin assure us that 
Themistocles was very young at the battle of Marathon, and 
this assurance is corroborated by other facts connected with his 
biography. He died at the age ot sixty-five, but he lived to 





diets this statement, and though his restless and book 

. in- 

ambitious temper had led him already into ac- 
tive life, and he might have combined with 
others more influential against Aristides, it can 
scarcely be supposed that, possessing no advan- 
tages of birth, he rose into much power or dis- 
tinction, till he won sudden and popular ap- 
plause by his gallantry at Marathon. 

II. Themistocles was of illegitimate birth, ac- 
cording to the Athenian prejudice, since his 
mother whs a foreigner. His father, though 
connected with the priotlv and high-born house 
of the Lycomeche, was not himself an Kupatrid. 
The young Themistocles had many of the qua- 
li ties which the equivocal condition of illegitnn 
often educes from active and stirring minds — 
insolence, ostentation, the de-ire to shine, and 
the invincible ambition to rise. He appears, by 
a popular tale, to have early associated with hi- 
superiors, and to have evinced betimes the art 
and address which afterwards distinguished 
him. At a meeting of all the illegitimate fOUths 
assembled at the wrestling ring at Cvno-arges, 
dedicated to Hercules, he persuaded some of the 

sec the siege of Cyprus by Cimon. This happened B.r. 449. 
If then, we refer his death to that year, he was born 514 
B.C., and therefore was about twenty-four at the battle of 

1 2 

01 ATI! I I 

BOOK VOUII«T nobles to aceom nan v liim. BO U f" COO- 

found a- it were tin- distinction I 

( 1 1 a p. 
in. timate and the Base-born. Ii . disposition 

a*aa bold, restless, and imp He paid 

Little attention t<> the Bubtleties of schooluui: 

the refinement- of the arts; bui even iri b 

ImxkI devoted himself t<» tin- study of |>olii 

and the art- of government. He would avoid 

the BpOttl and occupations of his ftchoolfell< 

and compote declamations, of which the sub 

UBS. tin- hnpeachmenl <>r defene< his 

young friends. His dispositions prophesied of 

his future career, and bis master was worn 

say, ' * that he was born to be a bl or a 

curse to tin' eonunonwealth.' 1 His sand 

precocious boyhood was followed by a wild 

licentious voutli. He lived in extreme*, and 

alternated between the loosest pleasures 1 and the 
most daring ambition. Entering prematurely 
into public life, either his restles- disposition or 

his political principles embroiled him with men 
of the highest rank. Fearless and sanguine, 
he cared not whom lie attacked, or what lie ad- 
ventured ; and, whatever his conduct before the 
battle of Marathon, the popular opinions he em- 

* Plut. in Yit. Them. Heraclides et Idomeneus ap. Athen. 
lib. 1-2 



braced could not but bring him, after that event, 
in constant opposition to Aristides, the champ 
of the Areopagus. 

That splendid victory which gave an < » | » « • 1 1 i i j lt 

to his career, sharpened bis ambition. The 
loud feme of Miltiad- iooi «>i 

verse, inspired him with ■ lofty cm v. II. 
seems from that period to have forsaken his 
more youthful excesses. H< abstained from hi^ 
wonted pursuits and pleasures -he indnL 
much in solitary and abstracted thought — he 

watched whole nights. Hi- friends womb-ivd 

at the change, and inquired the can-.-. •• The 
trophies of Miltiades, said he, "will not snifer 
me to sleep." From these meditatioiis, which 

are common to most men in the interval b 

an irregular youth and an aspiring manh 
bood seems to have awakened with fixed 0©j< 
and expanded riews Once emerged from the 
obscurit) of his birth, hi- pid, for 

he | 1 all the qualities which the people 

demand in a leader — not only the talents and the 
courage, but the affability ami the addn -- II. 

was an agreeable and boon companion — be com- 
mitted to memory the names of the bund' 

citizens— bis ver-atility enabled him to be all 
things to all men. Without the lofty spirit and 
beautiful mind of Pericles, without the pro- 
digal but effeminate graces of Alcibiades — 


( il w. 


7<> SUM •■ 

BOOK without, indeed, any of their Athenian 

in hi- intellectual composition, he yet \)amMt&i 

in.' much «>t' their powers of persuasion, their read) 
latent for business, and tie ir genius of mm. 
Hut lii- mind, if eoarsi i" than that of either ef 
bis -uecessors, was yet perhaps more masculine 
.iikI determined ; nothing diverted lii in fi 
his purpose nothing arrested hi- ambition, 

Hi- endi were great, and : •• associated the rise 
of hi- co un tr y with hii more selfish objects, bot 
he was unscrupulous a- to hi- im-an*. .\\id of 

glory, lie was not keenly susceptible to honour. 

He Beams rather not to have comprehended, thaa, 
comprehending, to have disdained, the limits 
which principle sel don. Remarkably far- 

-ighted, he po--< •— . .1 more than any of his con- 
temporaries, the prophctie science of affairs : — 
patient, vigilant, ami profound, he w a- all 

energetic, because always prepared* 

Such was the rival of Aristides, and raefa the 

rising leader of the popular party at Athens. 

III. History is silent as to the part taken by 
Aristides in the impeachment of Miltiades, but 

there is no reason to believe that he opposed the 
measure of the Alcjnaeonid party with which 
he acted, and which seems to have obtained 
the ascendency after the death of Miltiad. i. 
In the year following the battle of Marathon, we 
find Aristides in the eminent dignity of archon. 


In this office he became generally known by the book 
title of the Just. His influence, his official rank, 

' CHAP. 
the power of the party that supported him. won M. 

rendered him the principal authority of Athens* 

The courts of the judges were deserted, '\- 
litigant repaired to his arhitration — his admi- 
nistration of power obtained him almost? tin- 
monopoly of it. Still, however, lie ITSJ \ por- 
ously opposed by Theinistocles and the popular 
faction led by that aspiring rival. 

By degrees, various reasons, the chief of which 
svas his own high position, concurred to dimini-li 
She authority of Aristidss ; even sm ong st bis 

own parti-an- he lost ground, partly l»v the 

jealousy of the magistrates, whose authority h<- 
had superseded— and partly, doubtless, from ■ 

maxim more dangerous to a leader than any he 
can adopt, viz. impartiality b et w e en frit-mi- ami 

foes in the appointment to offices. Aristii 
garded not the political opinions, but the abstract 

character or talents, of the candidate. With 
ThemistOcleB, OS the contrary, it WSS a favourite 
laying, "The gods forbid that I should be in 
power, and my friends no partakers of my suc- 
cess." The tendency of the first policy is to 
discontent friends, while it rarely, if ever, con- 
ciliates foes ; neither is it so elevated as it may 
appear to the superficial; for, if we contend for 

1'Z Al -III.N8 : 

ihx.k the superiority oi one sel of principle 

another. we weaken the public virtue when 
chap ' 

in qua! rewardi to the princip condemn 

to the principle! we approve. W e mai 
;ij)j)i'ar ai it' the contest had been bul ■ ws 
names, and we disregard the harmony which ought 
imperishably to exist between the opinions which 

the state should approve, and the honours which 
the -laic can confer. He who i- impartial . 

persons must submit to seem lukewarm as to 

principles. Thm the more towering and eminent 

the seeming power of Arisftides, the more really 

hollow and insecure wen- it- foundations, 
hii own party it was unproductive to the mul- 
titude it appeared iineon-titutional. The extra- 
ordinary honours he had acquired — his mono- 
poly of the niaui-trature — his anti-popular opi- 
nions, could not hut be regarded with tear by ■ 
people so jealous of their liberties. He seemed 
to their apprehensions to be approaching gradu- 
ally to the sovereignty of the state — not, ind* 
by guards and military force, hut the more dan- 
gerous encroachments of civil authority. The 
moment for the attack arrived. Themistocles 
could count at last upon the chances of a critical 
experiment, and Aristides was subjected to the 
ordeal of the ostracism. 

IV. The method of the ostracism was thi- 


each citizen wrote upon a shell, or a piece of book 
broken earthenware, the name of the person be 
desired to banish. The magistrates counted the UL 
shells, and if they amounted to HI thousand, (a 
very considerable proportion of the free popula- 
tion, and less than which rendered the ostracism 
invalid,) they were sorted, and the man wli 
name was found on the greater number of shells, 
was exiled for ten years, with full permission to 
enjoy 1ii- estates. The sentence was one that 

honoured while it afflicted, nor did it involve any 

other accusation than thai <»f being too powerful 
or too ambitious for tin- citizen of a free -tate. 
It is a well-known stor\ . that, during tin- pro. 
of voting, an ignorant burgher came to Aristid 

whose person he did not know, and requested 
him to write down the name of Aristid 

lias he ever injured you ■" saked the . 


"No," answered the clown, u nor do 1 know 
him even by tight ; but it vexefl me to h- 
him everywhere called the • Ju-t. 

Aristides replied not — he wrote his own nam.- 
on the shell, and returned it to the enlightened 
voter. Such is a tale to which more importance 
than is its due has been attached. Vet perhaps 
we can give a new reading to the honest burgher's 
reply, and believe that it was not so expresshe 

\ I I 1 HENS : 

■OOK of envv at the \ irfii.-. u of f( 

putation. Aristides receired the sentem «• of 

in. exile with his ICCOStomed dignity. Hi- la-t 

irordf oa leafing bii native citj 

ract.ii-iic of hi- itll ami lofty 

M May the Athenian people," h«- said, 

know the day which thai] fore- them to r« rmm- 

ber Arietidee!**— A irish, fortunately alike for the 
exile ami the people, not realised. Thai day, 

patriotically d< [ ncated, Boon 

equally to Athens and Aristides, end the rep 
tion ofwrong, and the triumph of HI mud 

a common date. 

The singulai institution of tie cisai 

i- often cited in proof of the ingratitude 
republic, and the Bckleness of ■ people ; but it 

owed its origin not to republican disorders, hut 

to deSpoti< iclnnent — not to a people, hut 

to a tyrant. If ire look throughout all the 

( irecian states, we find that a tyranny was usually 
lUiahed by some ahleand artful citizen, who, 
attaching himself either to the aristocratic 
more frequently to the popular party, #as sod* 
denty elevated into supreme power, with the 
rise of the faction he had espoused. Establish- 
ing his fame by popular virtues, he was enabled 
often to support his throne by a moral authority 
— more dangerous than the odious defence of 



military hirelings : hence necessarily arose book 
amongst the free states ■ jealousy of indivi- 
duals, whose eminence became such a- to jus- III. 
tify an undue ambition ; and hence, for ■ loag 
period, while liberty \v;is \ t ■ t tender and in- 

the (almost) necessity of the ostracism. At 

totle, who laments and condemns the praeti. 
yet allows that in certain -tatt- it was absolutely 
requisite ; he thinks the evil it i- intended to 
prevent 'might have been provided for in the 

earlier epochs of a common wealth, by guarding 

against the rise of one man to ■ dangerous de- 
e of power; but where the habits and laws 

of a nation art' so formed as to render it iin- 

tible to prevent the rise, you most then 

guard against its consequence! ;' ami in another 

part of his Politics, he observes, "that even in 

republic.-, where men are regarded, not accord- 
ing to their wealth, but worth —where the citi- 
zen- love liberty and have arm- and valour t<» 
defend it ; yet, ihould the pre-eminent virtu. - 
of one man, or of one family, totally eclipse the 
merit of the community at large, you have but 
two choices- the ostracism or the throne.' 

If we lament the precaution, we ought then 
to acknowledge the cause. The ostracism wa- 
the creature of tie of the tyrannical, 

and not of the popular, principle. The bland 

7(i \ | l|. 

ioi and ipecioui h) pocris) <>f Pi - contim 

to work injury long after hi- d< and the 

in. « >-t i;m i - in of Aristido w ;i- tin- n< <<,nse- 

ajnenoe of tat seizure of the citadel. Such 
liath arbitrary power, that it produces injustice 
in the contrary principle- at a oottntorpail fcO thfl 
injustice of it* <>\\n ; -thus the oppression of our 
Catholic countrymen for centuries resulted fi 
the cruelties and persecutions of a p 
dency. We remembered the d and ire 

• I to the rigid precaution. J 

against a s o oo nd tyranny of opinion, ire con- 
demned, nor perhapi without adequate 
not one individual, bnl a whole sect, I 
moral eat rac ieui. Ancient tu aotthei 

opposite to the present -and the safety of 
the state nay encase, in a republic ;i- in a mo- 
narchy, a thousand act- of abstract injusf 
But the banishment of Ariatidea has peculiar 
excuses in the critical circum-tam-. - of the time. 
The remembrance of Phristratas ana -till fresh 
— his son had but just perished in an attempt 
on his country — the family -till lived, and -till 
menaced ; — the republic was yet in its infancy — a 
hostile aristocracy within its walls — a powerful 
enemy still formidable without. It is a remarkable 
fact, that as the republic strengthened, and as 
the popular power increased, the custom of 



tracism was superseded. The democratic party book 
was never so strong as at the time in which it ( . )m , 
Wm finally abolished. It is the insecurity of "'• 
power, whether in a people Off ■ king, that 
generates suspicion. Habituated to liberty, a 
people become less rigid and more enlightened 
as to its precautions. 

V. It had been a >a\ in«j. of Ari-tide- -that 
if the Athenians desired their affairs to pro>p<r. 

they ought to fling Inemistoclee and himi 
into the barathrum." But fortune was satisfied 
at this time with a single rictim, and reaanntd 
the other tor a later sacrifice. Relieved from 
the presence of a rival, who had constantly 
-ed and obstructed hi- I lea 

found ample scope for his genius. He was not 

on.- of those who are unequal to the situation it 

- them bo much to obtain. On his entrance 

into public life he i- -aid by Theophra- 
have po->essed only three talents, but the 

account is inconsistent with the eiisawagai 

of his earlier career, and still more with 
the expenses to which a man who attempts t«> 

lead a party i>, in all popular states, unavoidably 
subjected. .Mure probably, therefore, it ifl -aid 
of him by other-, that he inherited a competent 

patrimony, and he did not scrapie t 

upon every occasion to increase it, whether 


bom t h ro u gh the open emolument, or the indii 
perquisites, of public office. 1'mt, «1« *iri 
Hi. wealth m a means, ool an end, he grasped with 
one hand to Lavish with the other. II 
rositv dazzled, and his manners seduced, thi 
people, yet lie exercised the power be acqaired 

with a considerate and patriotic foresight. From 
the first n treat of the lYr-ian arinain. nt, he 
MM that tilt; danger was suspended, and ii'.t 
removed. But tin- Athenian-, who shared I 
common (irecian fault, and ever thought 
much of immediate, too little of distant, peril, 
imagined that Marathon had terminated the 
at contest between Asia and Europe. The? 
forgot the fleets of Persia* l»ut they still dreaded 
then-allies of AEgina. The oligarchs "f that rival 
RMn MM the political enemy of the Athenian 
demos, — the ally of the Persian was feared by the 
conqueror, and every interest, military and com- 
mercial, contributed to feed the passionate and 
jealous hate that existed against a neighbour, 
too near to forget, too warlike to despise. The 
thoughtful and profound policy of Themistocles 
resolved to work this popular sentiment to ul- 
terior objects ; and urging upon a willing 
audience the necessity of making suitable pre- 
parations against JEgina, then the mistress of 
the seas, he proposed to construct a navy, fitted 


equally to resist the Persian, and to open ■ new book 

dominion to the Athenians. 


To effect this purpose he called into aid one In - 
of the most valuable sources of her power which 
Nature had bestowed upon Athen-. 

VI. Around the country by the ancient Tho- 
ricus, on the road from the modern Kcrratia fa) 
the Cape of Sunium, heaps of scoria' indicate t<> 
the traveller that he is in the neighbourhood <>i' 
the once celebrated silver mines of Laurion ; 
be passes through pines and woodlands- — he no- 
tices the indented tracki of wheels which two 
thousand yean have no! effaced from the ><>il — 

lie discoren the ancient ifaaroi of the mines, and 

panaee before the fonndationi of a large circular 
tower and the extensive lemaine of tbecaatlee 
which fortified the neighbouring town. 41 A little 

farther, and still passing amongal mine-bank. < and 
hillocks of scoria-, lie beholds upon ( ape Colonna 

the fourteen existent columns of the Temple of 

Minerva SuniaS. In this country, tO which the 
old name is still attached, I H to be found a 
principal cause of the renown and the 1 . 

* See Dodwell's " Tour through Greece," Gell's " Itine- 

t "Called by some Laurion Ol Mount Laurion.' 

Cell's Itinerary. 



BOOK of Athens, — of the \i<tur\ of Salami- of the 

expedition to Sicily. 

HI- It appears that the silver mine- irion 

had been worked from ;i rery remote perio 
beyond even en] traditional date. But a- it i-, 
well and unanswerably remarked, " the scarcity 
of silver in the time of Solon proves that no 
teinatie or artificial process of" mining could at 

that time have been established."? It ires, pro- 
bably, daring th< ad politic rale 

of the dynasty of Pisistratus, that effieienl 
mean- were adopted to derive adequate advan- 
tage from so fertile a source of national wraith. 
And when, subsequently, Athens, profiting from 

the lessons of her tyrants, allowed the genua 
her free people to tdminister the -tat.-, freak 

necessity was created for wealth i the 

hostility of Sparta — fresh impetus given to 
neral industry and public enterprise. Accord- 
ingly, we find that shortly after tin- battle of 
Marathon, the yearly profits of the mines were 
immense. We learn from the researches of one 
of those eminent Germansf who have applied so 
laborious a learning with so subtle an acuteness 
to the elucidation of ancient history, that ti 

* Boeckh's Dissert, on the Silver Mines of Laurium. 
f Ibid. 



mines were always considered the property of book 
the State: shares in them were sold to indivi- 


duals as tenants in fee farms, and these proprie- m. 
tors paid, besides, an annual sum into the public 
treasury, amounting to the twenty-fourth part of 
the produce. The state, therefore, received a re- 
gular revenue from the mines, derived from the 
purchase-monies and the reserved rents. This 
revenue had been hitherto divided amongst all 
the free citizens, and the sum allotted to each 
was by no means inconsiderable, when The* 
mistocles, at an early period of his career, be- 
fore even the ostracism of Aristides,) had the 
courage to propose that a fund thus lucrative to 

every individual should be appropriated to the 
national purpose of enlarging the navy. The 

feud still carried on with the ASginetans was his 

pretext and excuse. But we cannot refuse our 
admiration to the fervent and generous order 
of public spirit existent at that time, when we 
find that it was a popular leader who propox d 
to, and carried through, a popular assembly the 
motion, that went to impoverish the men who 
supported his party and adjudged his proposi- 
tion. Privileged and sectarian bodies never 
willingly consent to a surrender of pecuniary 
benefits for a mere public end. But amongst 
the vices of a popular assembly, it possesses the 
vol. n. g 

k redeeming \ irtue to be ind 


and unconscious principle of selfisln 

« I1AI*. 

111. mocracy ran idun d I 

the service of the 

The money thus obtained was devoted t<> the 
augmentation of the matitimi to two hun- 

dred triremes an achievement that probably 
exhausted the mine revenue for lome 
and the custom once broken, the produce of 
l.anrion does not seem again to have been was 
upon individuals. To maintain and incr 
the new navy, ;i decree was passed, either at 
that time,* or somewhat later, which ordained 
twenty ti •! to he built yeai I 

\ II. The construction of th< . the 

verj saci ifice of the citizens, the general int. 
that must have attached to an undertaking that 

was at once novel in itself, and vet congenial 
not more to the passions of a people, who daily 

saw from their own heights the hostile rock of 
JEgina, " the eyesore of tin; Piraeus," thai 

the habits of men placed in a sterile land that on 
three sides tempted to the sea — all combined to 
assist Themistocles in his master policy — a po- 
licy which had for its design gradually to con- 
vert the Athenians from an agricultural into a 

* On this point, see Boeckh. Dissert, on the Silver 
Mines of Laurion, in reference to the account of Diodorus. 


maritime people. What was imputed to him tox 

a reproach became his proudest distinction, viz. 
that " lie first took his countrymen from the I 
spear and shield, and sent them to the lieneh 
and oar." 


(ll kPTEH iv. 
mi muMntwn ov oavji i ri 

iiii. m ( i i >>ims in mi. rmi \s mi W Of DAI 

r.iui'.K MOTS! Of ihi: 1.1 
IITiOl Off ills kip 

book I. \\ iiu.i;. nuder the presiding genial of The- 

CHAP mistocles, Athens was silently laying the ibun- 

1V - nation of her naval greatness, and gradually in- 

creaeing in inflnenee ami renown, tin- Persian 

monarch was not forgetful of tin- burning 
Sardis, and the defeat of Marathon. The 
armies of a despotic power are often slow to 
collect, and unwieldy to unite, and i)arius 
wasted three years in despatching emissaries to 
various cities, and providing transports, horses, 
and forage for a new invasion. 

The vastness of his preparations, though con- 
genial to Oriental warfare, was prohahly propor- 
tioned to objects more great than those which 
appear in the Greek historians. There is no 


reason, indeed, to suppose that he cherished the book 
gigantic project afterwards entertained by his nUA9 
son — a project no less than that of adding I*. 
Europe as a province to the empire of th 
But symptoms of that revolt in Egypt which 
shortly occurred, may have rendered it advisable 
to collect an imposing force upon Other pre- 
tences ; and without being ! >y any 
frantic revenge against the remote and petty 
territory of Athens, Darius could not but be 
sensible that the security of his Ionian, -Ma- 
cedonian, and Thracian conquests, with the 
homage already rendered to Id- sceptre by the 

isles of Greece, made it necessarj I BOB tin- 

disgrace of the Persian arms, and that the more 
insignificant tin' foe, th atal,if unpun 

the example of resistance. The Ionian 
— the entrance into Europe — were worth no in- 
considerable effort, and the more distant the 
provinces to he awed, the more Stupendous, ac- 
cording to all the rules of Asiatic MU, 
should appear the resources of the sovereign. 

lie required an immense armament, 
much for the sake of crushing the Athenian i 
as of exhibiting in all its might the angry ma- 
jesty of the Persian empire. 

II. But while Asia was yet astir with the martial 
preparations of the Great King, Egypt revolted 

V <- A'U! 

K firom bifl BWay, and, at the -ante time, the |>< 
111. , 

of Darin- was embittered, and his mind en 

i\ • \>\ a contest amongst hii 

186. to tin crown. Artniia/.am ■-. tin- eldest of hi- 
family, horn to him l>\ hi ife, previOl 

liis own < lrvation to tin- throne, founded bit 

claim upon the acknowledged rights of primo- 
init Xerxes, the eldest of ■ leeond 
family by daughter of the greal (\ 

advanced, on the other hand, a dii ent from 

the blood of the found, w of the Persian empire. 
Atossa, who appears t<> have inherited something 

of her father's genius, and who. at all 
exercised unbounded influence over Darin-, 
gave to the claim of her son a itronger support 

than that which be could derive from argument 
or custom. The intrigue probably extended 

from the palace throughout the pure Persian 
race, who could not but have looked with vene- 
ration upon a descendant of Cyrus, nor could 
there have seemed a more popular method of 
strengthening whatever was defective in the 
title of Darius to the crown, than the transmis- 
sion of his sceptre to a son, in whose person \ 
united the rights of the new dynasty and the 
sanctity of the old. These reasonings prevailed 
with Darius, whose duty it was to nominate his 
own successor, and Xerxes was declared his 


heir. While the contest \\; undecided, book 

there arrived at the Persian court, Demaratus, 


the deposed and self-exiled king of Sparta. He iv. 
attached himself" to the cause and person of 
Xerxes, and is even said to have furnished the 
young prince with new arguments, founded on 
the usages of Sparta — an assertion not to 
wholly disregarded, since Demaratus appeared 
before the court in the character of a monarch, 
if in the destitution of an exile, and I 
gestions fell upon the ear of an arbiter willing 
seize every excuse to justify the resolution' 
which lie had already arrived. 

This dispute terminated, Darius iii person 

prepared to march against tie an ivb, 

when his death consigned t<> the inexperienced b.c. 4s& 

hands of his heir the command of liis armies 
and the execution of his designs. 

The long reign of Dai lending over 

thirty-six years, was memorable for vast impr 
Stents in the administrations of the empire, nor 
will it, in this place, be an irrelevant digression, 
to glance briefly and rapidly back over some 
of the events and the innovations l»y which it 

was distinguished. 

III. The conquest of Cyrus had transplanted, 
as the ruling people, to the Median empire, a 
race of brave and hardy, but simple and un- 

Mill Nfi 

book civilized warrioi mby-> •-, <>t'wh«>-.- ehara 

in. • . • , * • • i 

ter m» imniiiiMiral e\ idcnce remain tin- 

i\ . ferocious ami frantic crimi - ascribed t«» him* i 

conveyed to as through the channel of 1 1 . 

tian priests, whom he persecuted, m<>»t probably, 

rather as a political nobility than a religious 

caste, could bu1 slightly have improved the i 

dit ion of the people, or the administration <>f'th»- 

empire, lines his reign lasted b 

and live months, during which b< ecupied 

with the invasion of Africa, and the subjugation 

of Egypt. At the conclusion <»l liis reign, he 

iras menaced by a singular conspi 

Median magi conspired, in nil absence from the 

seat of empire, to elevate ■ Mede to th<- throne. 

Cambysea, under the impulse of jealous and 

superstitious fears, had lately put to death 

Smerdis, his brother. Hie secret was kept from 

the multitude, and known only to a lew, — 
amongst other-, to the Magian whom (ami 
bad entrusted with the charge of his palace 

an office as important as confidential. This man 

* If we except the death of his brother, in the Cambyses 
of Ctesias, we find none of the crimes of the Camln- 
Herodotus — and even that fratricide loses its harsher aspect 
in the account of Ctesias, and Cambyses is represented as 
betrayed into the crime by a sincere beliet in his brother's 


conceived a seheme of amazing but not unpa- BOOE 
ralleled boldness. His brother, a namesake of ^ 

the murdered prince, resembled the latter also in JV. 
tge and person. This brother, the chief of the 
household, with the general connivance of hi- 
rdotal caste, who were naturally anxious to 
restore the Median dynasty, suddenly declared 
to bethetrueSmerdis, andtheimp< iinitt. d 

to possession of the palace, asserted his claim t.» 
the sovereign power. The consent of the magi — 
the indifference of the people-**!* not 

only of the king, but of the ilow.r of t! 
sian race- and above all, the tran.piil possession 
of the imperial palace, conspired to favour the 
deceit. 41 Placed mi the Persian throne, but con- 
cealing his parson from the eyas of the multi- 
tude in the impenetrable pOttp of an Oriental 
Sarafftio, the Pseudo Smerdis had the audacity 
to despatch, amount the heralds that proclaimed 

his accession, a me- to the Egyptian arm) . 

* The tCCOUnt of this conspiracy in ( BMW ""- 

probable than that afforded to us by Herodotus. But in both, 

the most extraordinary features of the plot are the same, vi/. 
the Itriking likeness bet* em the impostor and the dead prince, 
and the complete success which, for a time, attended the 
fraud. In both narrations too we can perceive, behind the 
main personages ostensibly brought forward, the outline 
profound device of the magi to win back from the Persian 
conquerors, and secure to a Mede, the empire oi' the Eaafc 

•ok demanding 1 1 1 • i round 


( 'jiinhvses at Rcbatana in ther 

i • 1 1 \ i» J 

w . cowardice dot -loth was the ball of thai d 
much ; In- sprang upon his hoi 
to march al oner to Suaa, when th< . fell 

from oil iword, and h< • «l ;i mortal wound 

from the oaked blade. Cambytee hit no off- 
spring, and the impostor, believed by the people 
be til.- true son o From the 

1 >i« • bit pal 

popular proclamation- and beD 

W'hatr present fraud, wh 

\io: or, this daring Mede was enabled to 

make his reign beloved and ted. A 

bn death I II bat the JVr- 

siane, who would not ha. ived the virt 

of a god a- an excuse foi the usurpation of a 
Mode. Known to tl, empire only by his 

munificence of spirit — by hi ! of tribute 

and service, the impostor permitted none to his 
presence, who could have d 
He never quitted his palace — the nobles I 
not invited to his banquets — the women in his se- 
raglio were separated each from each — and it was 
only in profound darkness that the partnei 
his pleasures were admitted to his bed. The 
imposture is said by Herodotus to have been 
first discovered in the following manner : — the 


Magian, according to the royal custom, had ap- hook 
propriated to himself the wives of Cam 1 
one of these was the daughter of (Han 
sian noble whom the secluded habits of the 
pretended king filled with suspicion. me 

offence, the Magian had been formerly deprii 
of* his ears by the order of ( 'vrus. ( >tane- com- 
municated this fact, with his suspicions, to I 
daughter, and the next time she was a partaker 

of the royal couch, >'i* took tl. ion of his 

sleep to convince herself that tie- sovereign of 

the Bast wa- a branded and criminal iinpo-f 

The suspicions of Otanes verified, h< 

with six other nobles, into a i which 

mainly owed its success t" tie- r solution and 
energy of one amongst them, named Darius, 
who appear- to have held a station of but mode- 
rate importance among the royal guard, though 
son of Hv>taspes, governor of the province of 
Persi8, and of the purest and loftiest blood of 
Persia. The conspirator- penetrated the pa! 
unsuspected — put the eunuchs who encountered 
them to death and reached the chamber in 
which the usurper himself wa- seated with his 
brother. The impostors, though but imperfectly 
armed, defended themselves with valour ; two 
of the conspirator- were wounded, but the 
swords of tin' rest sufficed to consummate the 


\ mi 

book work, and Darius himself gave the death-blow 

,... ._ to on.- of the brothei 
Iv « This revolatioa was a ccomp anied ;m<I itained 
by an indiscriminate massacre of the M 
Nor did the Persians, who bore to thai Median 
tribe the asnal hatred which conqneron feel to 

the wisest and the noblest j »m rt of the conqui 

• "lit, nt tin with a short-lived and 

tingle revenge* The memory of the imposture 

and tin- m;i«;n n WSJ kmg J »• rp* t u;it. d I. 

solemn festival, called i> tlir Slaughter of the 
Magi," or Magophonia, during which m> 
was permitted to I abroad. 

The result of tlii- conspiracy threw into the 

hands of tin- seven nobles the i a to th<- 

Persian throne : the election fell npon Darin-, 
the soul of the enterprise, and who was of that 

ancient and princely house of the Achaemenids, 

in which the Persians recognised the family 

of their ancestral kings. But the other con- 
spirators had not struggled solely to excha 
one despot for another. With a new monarchy 
arose a new oligarchy. Otanes was even ex- 
empted from allegiance to the monarch, and his 
posterity were distinguished by such exclusive 
honours and immunities, that Herodotus calls 
them the only Persian family which retained its 
liberty. The other conspirators probably made 



ji kind of privileged council, since they claimed book 
l he light of access at all hours, unannounced, to ( 
the presence of the king — a privilege of the ut- ^ 
most value in eastern forms of government — 
and their power was rendered pennant nt and 
solid by certain restrictions on marriage,* which 
went to maintain a constant alliance between 
the Royal family and their own. While she 
six conspirators rose to an oligarchy, the tribe 
of the Pasargadae — the noblest of those ft 
t.ions into which the pure Persian family v 
divided — became an aristocracy lootHcerthearmy 
and adorn the court. But though the great body 
of the conquered Med. kepi in subject in- 

feriority, yet the more sternly enforced from 

the Persian resentment at the late .Median u-urp- 
ation, Dariui prudently conciliated the l!, 
powerful of that great class of his subject- l»\ 

* Herodotus says it m resolved that the king could 
only marry into the family of one of the conspirators ; but 
Darius married two daughters and one grand-daughter of 
Cyrus. It is more consonant with eastern manners to sup- 
pose that it was arranged that the king should give his own 
daughters in marriage to members of these six houses. It 
would have been scarcely possible to claim the monopoly of 
the royal seraglio, whether its tenants wire wius or concu- 
bines, and in all probability the king's choice was only limited, 
(nor that very rigidly) to the family of Cyrus, and the nu- 
merous and privileged race of the Aeluemenids. 

!M hi \ 

book offices of dijrnitN and I of all the 


,■■■,„ tributary nations, the Medea ranked next to tin- 

i 1 1 A I*. J 

lv - Persians. 

IV. With Darin*, the Persian monarch) pro- 

i to that great ;i of 

th" founded by conquering 

when, after rich poaMfnon ized,citi 

and settlement dished, the un 

( Dormous empire is divided into provin* 
ifttrmp government reflects in every district tin 
mingled despotism and subs pomp 

rnsecui the imperial court. Darin- un- 

doubtedly took the most efficient means in his 
power to cement I mize his 

soorc Pot the better collection of tribute, 
twenty provinces were ned by 

■ntv satraps. Hitherto no specific and regular 
tax had been levied, but the Persian kin«^s bad 
been contented with reluctant presents, or arbi- 
trary extortions. Darin- now imposed a limited 
and annual impost, amounting, according to the 
computation of Herodotus, to fourteen thon- 
five hundred and sixty talents, collected par- 
tially from Africa, principally from Asia. 4 The 

* Besides the regular subsidies, we gather from Hero- 
dotus, 1. c. 92, that the general population was obliged to 
find subsistence for the king and his armies. Babylon 
raised a supply for four months, the resources of that sa- 
trapy being adequate to a third part of Asia. 


Persians, as the conquering and privileged race, hook 
were excluded from the general imposition, but 

... . , IAP. 

paid their moderate contribution under the iv. 

softer title of gratuity. The Colchian> fixed 
their own burthens— the Ethiopians that bor- 
dered Egypt, with the inhabitant- of the NMfrtd 
town of Nyssa, rendered also tributary gra- 
tuities — while Arabia offered the homage of her 
frankincense, and India* of her gold. The em- 
pire of Darius aras the more secure, in that it 
was contrary to ita constitutional spirit to inno- 
vate on the interior organization of the distant 
provinces — they enjoyed their own national law- 
and institutions — they even retained their mo- 
narch* --thev resigned nothing but their inde- 
pendence and their tribute. The duty of the 

satraps was but civil and financial: the] 

were responsible for the hn p o st a, tin 

cuted the royal d. Their institution 

was outwardly designed but for the better I 
lection of the revenue ; but, when from the 
ranks of the nobles Dariofl rose to the throne, 
he felt the advantage of creating subject 
principalities, calculated at once to r and 

to content the more powerful and ambitious of 
his former equals. Save Darius himself, no 

* That comparatively small ami frontier part of India 
known to Darius. 

!><; mi vs : 

BOM nionareh in tin* known world |»< thedo- 

niinion of enjoyed the splendour accorded t«» 
i\ ' these imperial viceroys. Babylon and 

fell to one Modi t sufficient for another 

— nation w ; i - added to nation, and race to r 
to form a province worthy the nomination 
re pr es en tative of the Great King. Hi- pomp 

and State \ lifted t! 

nionareli-. \ measure of silver, 
Attic Mcdiinims, was presented every da] 
the satrap of Babylon." Eight hundred stalli 
and sixteen thousand mare-, were apportioi 

to hi> Stables, and the tax of four Assyrian towns 

\\;is to provide for the maintenance of his Indian 


Hut under Darius, at least, these inL 
officers were curbed and kept in awe by the 
periodica] vi>its of the king himself, or his 
commissioners; — while a broad road, from the 
western coast to the Persian capital — in 
that received the messengers, and couriers, that 
transmitted the commands of the king, brought 
the more distant provinces within the reach of 
ready intelligence, and vigilant control. T 
latter improvements were well calculated to 
quicken the stagnant languor habitual to the over- 

* Forming a revenue of more than 100,000/. sterling. — 
Heeren's Persians, chap. ii. 



growth of eastern empire. Nor was the reign •JJ* 
of Darius undistinguished by die cultivation of tmAV 
the more elegant arts — since to that period may ^^ 
be referred, if not the foundation, at lead the 
embellishment and increase of Persepolis. The 
remains of the palace of Chil-Meoar, ascribed 
by modern superstition to the architecture of 
genii, its graceful column-, its mighty masonry, 
its terrace-flights, its marble basins, its sculptured 
designs stamped with the onmistakeable emblems 
of the Magian faith, sufficiently evince that the 
shepherd-soldiery of Cyrus had already lean 
to appreciate and employ the most elaborat 

of the subjugated .Med. 

During tins epoch, too, \\a> founded a more 
regular militai mi, by the institution of 

conscriptions — while the subjection of the skilful 
sailors of Phoenicia, and of the great maritime 

cities of Asiatic Greece, brought to the Persian 

warfare the new arm of a numerous and expe- 
rienced navy. 

V. The reign of Darius is also remarkable 
for the influence which Grecian strangers beg 
to assume in the Persian court — and the fatal 
and promiscuous admission of ( ireciau mer. 
naries into the Persian service. The manners 
of the Persians were naturally hospitable, and 
Darius possessed not only an affable temper, but 


I II \l\ 

!>H ATM 

Bopi ;m in<|iiMti\r mind. A ( rreek pi i of 

( Irotona, who tnnceeded in retiering the king 
it< iVoiii the effect! "l =» painful accident which bad 
baffled th<- Egyptian practition icd the 

most ikilfnl the court po--.--< «|. naturally rose 
into in important personage. His reputation 
am tnefaaaed hy :| more difficult cure ii; 
the pataan of Atossa, the daughter of Cyrus, 
who, iVom the arms of bar brother Cambyeeej 
and those of th hi im potior, pa*-.d to the 

royal marriage bed. And the physician, though 
desiroen. only of returning, through some | 
text, to hi- own country, perhaps first inflamed 
the Persian kino; with the ill-starred arisfa of an- 
nexing Greece to hi> dominions. He despatched 
a commission, with the physician himself, to ra- 
jiort on the affairs of Greece. .Many Hellenic 

adv an t u r e W ware at that time scattered over the 
empire, some who had served arith Cambyi 
others who had sided with the Egyptiaaa. 
Their valour recommended them to a rati ant 
people, and their singular genius for intrig 
took root in every soil. Sylceon, a Greek of 
Samos, brother to Polycrates, the tyrant of that 
state, who, after a career of unexampled feli- 
city and renown, fell a victim to the hostile 
treachery of Orcetes, the satrap of Sardis, in- 
duced Darius to send over Otanes at the 



head of a Persian force, to restore him to BOOK 
the principality of his murdered brother; and u , 
when, subsequently, in hi- Scythian expedition, 1V - 
Darius was an eye-witness of the brilliant 
civilisation of Ionia, not onlv did G be- 

come to him more an object of ambition, but 
the Greeks of his respect. He BOUght, by B mu- 
nificent and wise clemency, to attach them to hi< 
throne, and to colonize his territories With subj, 

valuable alike for their constitutional courage 

and national intelli. Nor can we wonder 

at the esteem which a llippias or a Demaratus 
fOUlld in tin* Persian council-., when, in addition 
to the general reputation of < I they w 

invented with the dignity of princely rank Kit 

above all nation*,* the Persians n aerated 

the name and the attributes of a king; i. 
could their Oriental notions have accurately dis- 
tinguished between a legitimate monarch and i 
Greek tyrant. 

VI. In this reign, too, as the empire WBJ eon- 
centrated, and a splendid court arose from the 
warrior camp of Cyrus and CambystS, the noble 

elements of the pure Persian character grew 

confounded with the Median and Assyrian. 
As the Persians retreated from the manners of a 

* Such are the expo. >sions 6f Herodotus. His testimony 
is corroborated by the anecdotes in Ins own history, and. in- 
deed, 1>\ all other ancient authorities. 

H 2 

100 A TURNS : 

aooi nomad, they lost the distinction of a con que rii 
in. ' 

people, Warriors became courtien the palace 

[▼« shrank into the seraglio eunoehi and fa\our- 

lies, <jur, i)-,* and, above all, queen-motln 

into pernicions and invisible influence. And 

while the Greeks, in their -mall stato - ;in(l under 

their li in in t- 11 r ressed to a < i\ ;. 

t ion , in which luxur} onl) sharpened n< 
gies and created n«*\\ art-, t! 

tion of a despotism destracti competition, 

and an empire t<.<» rasl tor patriotism, rapidly 
debased and rained the old bardj I 

perhapfl « qua! originally to the < rreeks in mental, 

and in many important point- far superior to 
them in moral, qualities. With a I 
animated and picturesque, but more simple ami 
exalted, rejecting the belief that the < 
partook of a mortal nature, worshipping their 
Great One not in statues or in temples, but 
upon the sublime altar of lofty mountain tops — or 
through those elementary agents, which are the 

* Dinon, (Apud Athcn. lib. xiii.) observes, that the Persian 
queen tolerated the multitude of concubines common to the 
royal seraglio, because they worshipped her, like a divinity. 

t See, in addition to more familiar authorities, the curious 
remarks and anecdotes relative to the luxury of the Persian 
kings, in the citations from Dinon, Heraclides, Agathocles, 
and Chares of Mitylene, scattered throughout Athena?us, lib. 
xii. xiii. xiv. ; but especially lib. xii. 


unidolatrous representatives of Hi- Lneficence hook. 

. . hi. 

and power;* — accustomed, in their primitive and 

uncorrupted state, to mild laws and limited an- n 

thority ; inured from childhood to physical di-- 

cipline and moral honesty, u to draw the how 

and to speak the truth," — this gallant and 

splendid tribe were luted to make one of tie- n, 

signal proofs in history, that neither the talent- 

of a despot, nor the original virtues of a people, 

can long resist the inevituhle effect of viei 

political constitutions. It ires not atMarathon, nor 

at Salamis, nor at Platssa, that the Persian glory 

fell. It tell when the Perstani imitated the 

manners of the -law- the\ conquered. " .Most 

imitative of all men/' sav- ll.-rud«>tu». u they 

are ever ready to adopt the manners of the 

foreigners. They take from the .Mede- their 

robe, from the Egyptians their breaetplal 

Happy, if to the robe and the Inva-tpl 
they had confined their appropriations from the 
nations they despised ! Happy, if thev had not 
imparted to their august religion the gross adul- 
terations of the Median magi ; — if thev had not 
exchanged their mild laws and restricted go- 
vernment, for the most callous contempt of 
the value of lifef and the dignity of freedom. 

* Strabo, lib. xv. Herod, lib. i. c, exxxi. 

\mong innumerable instances of the disdain oi human 
life contracted after their conquest by those very Persiani who, 
in their mountain obscurity, would neither {>ermit their so- 

kOfi aiiii nm 

book The whole of the pure Persian race, but 


ciallv tin* aobler tribe <>l' tin- Peoa aim; 

IP. . J , , 
i\. nueed i)\ conquest ovet M va-l B popul; 

the natural arMocracv of tin- land. lint tin* 

\alnaltlr |innci|>lc <»i' ari-t<>« -rath- pride, which H 

tin- safest cnil) to monarchic 

cruinblecl a\va\ in tin- atnm-j>lc I <lt.*spO- 

li-ni. wliicli rct-civcil its I •aj»ricion> check- Of 

awful chastisement only in the dark recetft 

vcrcign to pat anyone to A r the 

mash r of .1 household to exercise undue severity to a 

member of his family, ( Herod, lib. 

|| (I h\ I hrodotus, and, in tlie main, corroborated hv.lustin. 
1). u in- i| .it the HOgO Of Babvlon j Zopv i . 
i (inspirators against the Magian, maims himself and t 
Babylon as a deserter, having previously concerted vvith 
Dtrrai that a thousand men, whose loss he could best 
-pare, should be sent, one day, to the gate of Scmiramis, 
and two thousand, another day, to the gates of Sinus, and 
tour thousand, a third day, to the Chaldaan gates. All these 
detachments Zopyrus, at the head of the Babylonians, deli- 
berately butchered. The confidence of the Babylonians thus 
obtained, Zopyrus was enabled to betray the city to the 
king. This cold-blooded and treacherous immolation of 
seven thousand subjects was considered by the humane 
Darius and the Persians generally a proof of the most illus- 
trious virtue in Zopyrus, who received for it the reward of 
the satrapy of Babylon. The narrative is so circumstantial 
as to bear internal evidence of its general truth. In fact, 
a Persian would care no more for the lives of seven thousand 
Medes than a Spartan would care for the lives of suspected 


a harem. Retaining to the last their disdain of book 

& in 

all without the Persian pale ; deeming them- 

( 'I I V 1'. 

selves still " the most excellent of mankind ;' '* n ■ 
this people, the nobility of tin- Batt, with the 
arrogance of the Spartan, contracting tin- vices 

of the Helot, rapidly decayed from all their 
national and ancient virtues beneath that | 

raglio-rule of jaarssariei and harlots, in which, 

from first to last, have merged the melancholy 
destinies o£ Oriental dt'spotism. 
VII. Although Dariu - ramer to bai 

pOSOCfflflod the ardour for conquest than tin* § 
nins for war, his reign was memorable for many 
military triumphs, Mine cementing, others ex- 
tending, the foundations oi the empire : A for- 
midable insurrection of Babylon, which resisted 

a liege of t\\ent\ -our month>. prsj tfloclaillj 
extinguished, and the nei satrap gam rument, 
aided by the yearlj \i--it- of the king, appet 

to have kept from all subsequent re -animation 

the vast remains of that ancient empire of the 

* Herodot. lil>. i. e. c\\\i\. The P B, whom the 

ancient writer* evidently end often confound with the whole 

PeniaB population, retained the old education and severe dis- 
cipline tor their \ outli, long after the old virtues had died av\ ftj . 
Strabo, \\. Herod, lit), i. and the rhetorical romance or' 
\enophon.) Hut laws and customs, from which the ani- 
mating spirit of national opinion and sentiment has passed, 
are hut the cenotaphs of deed forms emhahned in vain. 

MM Aim 

hook Chaldean kings. Subsequently en expedition 

alone, the banks of the Indus, first m I for 

en ^ |. 

i\. discovery by one of tin; (ineks whom Darius 
took into his employ, subjected the highlands 
north of the [ndna, and gure thai distant ri \ • 

i iirw boundary to the Persian realm. More im- 
portant, had the fortunes of his son hern equal to 

his designs, was the alarming settlement which 
the monarch of Asia e flecte d on th»- European con- 
tinent, by establishing hi- sorereignty in Tht 

and Macedonia — hy exacting homage from the 
isles and manv of the citio of ( irei-cc — hy bn-ak- 

htg uj>, with the crowning fall of Miletus, the in- 
dependence and rising power of those Ionian 
colonies, which ought to h Misled on 

the Asiatic coasts the permanent harrier to the 
irruptions of eastern conquest. Against these 
BUCeeeeee the loss of six thousand four hundred 
men at the battle of Marathon, a less number than 
Darius deliberately sacrificed in a stratagem at 
the siege of Babylon, would have seemed but a 
petty counterbalance in the dispatches of his 
generals, set off, as it was, by the spoils and 
the captives of Euboea. Nor were the settle- 
ments in Thrace and Macedon, with the awe 
that his vast armament excited throughout that 
portion of his dominions, an insufficient recom- 
pense for the disasters of the expedition, con- 



ducted by Darius in person, against the wander- 
ing*, fierce, and barbarous Mongolian race, that, 
known to us by the name of Scythians, wor- 
shipped their war-god, under the symbol of I 
cirniter, with libations of human blood, — hi- 
deous inhabitants of the inhospitable and bar- 
ren tracts that interpose between the Danube 
and the Don. 

VIII. Thus the heritage that passed from 

Darius to Xerxes was the fruit of a long and, anon 
the whole, a wise and glorious reign. The new 
sovereign of the East did not, like his father, find 
a disjointed and uneeinentcd empire of countries 

rather conquered than subdued, destitute alike of 
regular revenues and local governments ; ■ wan- 
dering camp, shifted to and fro in a wilderness 
of unconnected nations ;— -Xerxes tsoended the 
throne amidst a splendid court, with Babylon, 
Ecbatana, Persepolis, and SuSSJ fat his palaces. 
Submissive satraps united the most distant pro- 
vinces with the seat of empire. The wealth of 
Asia was borne in regular currents to his ti 
lury. Save the revolt of the enfeebled Egyptians, 
and the despised victory of a handful of men 
upon a petty foreland of the remote JEgSBaa, no 
cloud rested upon the dawn of his reign. As 
yet unfelt and unforeseen were the dangers that 
might ultimately result from the very wisdom 





\ I II. 

iOOM <»l Darm- in the institution ol Mtrane, who. it 

in. ,. . 

not sumciently supported by military For< 

i\- would M nnahlr t<> control the motlr\ nah 

over wliidi thcv proairtod. and, if io support 

illicit tliciiixU.-. Ii.c.iiiic. in anv lionr, tin- 

mo-t formidable rebels. To whatever pr< 
inherited from the Game of hi-, father, the yoaag 

king added, also, a more vemrahlc and 
dignity in the ey. ■ q| hi- |Vi-ian aii-ton.. 

and. perhaps, throughout the whole empire, 
derived, on Id- mother's ude t from the blood 

of ( \ ru-. Never, Io all externa] appeara 

and, to ordinary foresight, under luirei aospi 
did a jninee of the East pass from the luxur 

a leraglie to the majesty of a throne. 





sou i:s on Tin: invasion 01 QKB1C1 \ \>T i'in:i* \k vi 1on> 


tkiiuii. mi: lUHDOK of Tin: 111:1.1. lnI-oni UVinf 01 MP 



L Otf succeeding to the throne of the l rxes B °Y K 

found the mighty army collected l>> In- father, . 1IU , 

prepared to execute hi> designs of conquest or Y * 

revenge. Jn the greatness of that army, in the * 8 j 

youth of that prince, various parties beheld the 

instrument of interest or ambition. Mardonius, 
warlike ami enterprising] desired the >nl>j ligation 
of Greece, and the command of the Persian Imp 

And to the nobles of the Pasargada- an expedition 
into Europe could not but present a da/./linu 
prospect of spoil and power — of satrapies a> yet 
unexhausted of treasure — of garrisons and troops 
remote from the eye of the monarch, and the 
domination of the capital. 

The persons who had most influence over 


\ I IIKMS : 

hook Xerxes wen; hi- uncle Ai talcum-, lii- COUMI 

Mardonins, and in eanoefa named Natacas.* 

v. The intrigues of tin- part] favourable to the 
invasion of Europe were backed by thi 
sentations of tin- (irecian exih>. The family 
and parti /.an- of tin- I'i-i-tratida- bad fixed them- 
selves in Sosa, and the Greek subtlet) and spirit 
of enterprise maintained and confirmed, for that 
unprincipled and aide faction, tie credit thej 

had already established at tie- I't r-ian court. 
Onomacritus, an Athenian priest, formerij l»a- 
nished by Hippaichm for forging oracular pre] 
dictions, was now reconciled to the Pisistrati 

and resident at Su.-;i. Presented to tin- kin: 

-oothsayer and prophet, he inflamed the am- 
bition of Xerxes by garbled oracles of conq 
and fortune, which, this time, it was not the in- 
terest of the Pisistratidae to expose. 

About the same period the Aleuadae, I 
princes of Thessaly whose policy seems ever to 
have been that of deadly hostility to the Grecian 
republics, despatched ambassadors to Xerxes, 
inviting him to Greece, and promising assistance 
to his arms, and allegiance to his sceptre. 

II. From these intrigues Xerxes aroused him- 
self in the second year of his reign, and, as the 
necessary commencement of more extended de- 
* Ctesias, 20. 


signs, conducted in person an expedition against book 
the rebellious Egyptians. That people had 
neither military skill nor constitutional hardi- v. 
hood, but they were inspired with the n 
devoted affection for their faith and their in-ti 
tutions. This affection was to them what the 
love of liberty is in others— it might be easy to 
conquer them, it was almost impossible to sub* 
due. By a kind of fatality their history 1 for 
centuries, was interwoven with that of Greece : — 
their perils and their enemies the >anie. The an- 
cient connexion which apocrypha] tradition re- 
corded between races io opposite, seemed a typical 

propheCJ of that which actually existed in the 

historical times. And if former!) ( Greece bad de- 
rived something of civilisation from I she 

now paid back the gilt by the sword- of her ad veil- 
hirers ; and the bravest and most loyal part of 
the Egyptian army was composed of Grecian 

mercenaries. At the same time Egypt shared 

the fate of all nations that entrust too great I 

power to auxiliaries. Greeks defended her, but 

Greeks conspired against her. The adven- 
turers from whom she derived a fatal S tren g t h 
were of a vain, wily, and irritable tempera- 
ment. A Greek removed from the influences of 
Greece usually lost all that was honest, all 
that was noble in the national character ; and 

1 10 Aim 

book xv i f j, || H . ,,,,,„, refining intellect, he united a 
chap. 1 )() '' <V Hksj that <>t the Italian in the middle 
v> ages, fierce, faithless, and depraved. Tl, 

while the Greek auxiliaries undeT Amasis, or 
rather Psnmmcnitus, resisted to the last f he 
arms of Cambyses, it was by a Greek Phanei 
that Egypt had been betrayed. Perhaps, could 
we thoroughly ham all the secret ipringi of the 
re+olt af Egypt, and the expedition 
we might find a coincidence not of dates a! 
between Grecian and Egyptian affairs. Whe- 
ther in Memphis or in Susa, it i- wonderful to 
see the amazing influence and ascendancy which 
the Hellenic intellect obtained. It wai in reality 
the desperate refuse of Europe, that swayed 
councils, moved the armies, and decided tie : 
of the mighty dynasties of the Ki-t 
484 HI. The anus of Xerxes were triumphant in 

Egypt, and he more rigorously enforced upon 
that ill-fated land the iron despotism comrade 
by ( amhvses. Entrusting the Egyptian govern- 
ment to his brother Achaemenes, the Persian 
king returned to Susa, and flushed with his 
victory, and more and more influenced by the 
ambitious councils of Mardonius, he now fairly 
opened, in the full divan of his councillors, the 
vast project he had conceived. The vanity of 
the Greeks led them too credulously to suppose 

\ . 


that the invasion of Greece was the principal B0 J°* 
object of the Great king; on the contrary, it rllAP 
was the least. He regarded Greece hut as the 
threshold of a new quartet of the globe*. Igno- 
rant of the nature of the lands he designed 
subject, and credulous of all the fables which 
impart proverbial magnificence to the Unknown, 
Xerxes saw in Europe "regions not inferior to 
Asia in extent, and far surpassing it in fertilii 
After the conquest of Greece on either continent, 
the young monarch unfolded to his councillors his 
intention of over-running the whole of Europe. 
"until heaven itself should be the only limit to 
the Persian realm, and the IUO shonld shine on 
no country contiguous to bis own/'* 

IV. These schemes, supported by (sftrdonius, 
were opposed onl\ by Artabanti- ; and the argu- 
ments of the latter, dictated by prudence and ex- 
perience, made considerable impression upon the 
king. From that time, however, new engine- of 
Superstitions craft and imposture were brought 
to bear upon the weak mind, on whose decision 
now rested the fatal war between Asia and 
Europe. Visions and warnings, threats and ex- 
hortations, haunted his pillow and disturbed his 
sleep, all tending to one object, the invasion of 
Greece, As we learn from Ctesias that the 

* Herod, lib. vii. c. \i. 





eunuch Natacai was our of the paraaitea mo«t 

r uAv influential with \ it [| probable that -.» 

important a personage in tin- intri f a 

pelade, wee, with the evidenl conuivanci 

Magi, the instrument of Mardonius. Ami, 

indeed, firom thii period the politic* of P 
became more and i ncentrated in the dark 

plots of the seraglio. Thai superstition, flattery, 
ambition, :ill operating upon him, the 
lution of \ aniahed. Artabanus himself 

affected to be convinced of the expediency <»t' 
the war ; and the only object now remaining 
the king and Ida councillors, eras to adapt tin- 
preparations to the magnitude of tin- enterpri 
Four additional year- were n»»t deemed an idle 
delay in collect ing an army and fleet destined 
to complete the conquest of the world. 

" And never," says Herodotn- - there a 

military expedition comparable to this. Hani 
would it be to specify one nation of Asia, which 
did not accompany the Persian kin^, or a 
waters, save the great rivers, which were not 
exhausted by his armament." Preparation- for 
an expedition of three years were made, to 
guard against the calamities formerly sustained 
by the Persian fleet. Had the success of the 
expedition been commensurate with the gran- 
deur of its commencement, perhaps, it would 


have ranked amongst the sublimest conceptions hook 

of military genius. All its schemes were of a 

J . . . CHAP. 

vast and gigantic nature. Across the isthmus, v. 

which joins the promontory of Atlios to the 

Thracian continent, a canal was formed — ■ work 

of so enormous a lahour, that it seeing aim 

to have justified the scepticism of later writers ;* 

but for the concurrent testimony of Thucydides 

and Lysias, Plato, Herodotus and Strabo: 

Bridges were also thrown over the river St j 

mon ; the care of provisions was entrusted to the 

Egyptians and Phoenicians, ami stores irere de* 

posited in every station that seemed tlie b 
adapted for suppli. 

V. While these preparation- w.-iv < allied 
on. the Great King, at the head of hi- land 

forces, marched to Sardis. Passing the rim 

llalys, and the frontiers of Lvdia, he halted at 

( 'ela-me. Here he wa> magnificently entertained 
hy Pythius, a Lydian, esteemed, next to the 

king- himself, the richest of mankiiul. This 
wealthy subject proffered to the young prince, in 

prosecution of the war, tin- whole of hi- treasure, 
amounting to two thousand talent- of silver, and 
four millions, wanting only seven thousand, of 

* Juvenal, Richardson, &C The preparations at mount 
Alhos commenced three yean before Xerxes arrived at Sar- 
dis. (Compart' Herod. 1. vii 21, wit 1 


1 II \ TIM v 

i'-ook s^lden staters of Darius.* "Mj forms, and raj 

he added, " will be sufficient to maintain 

< 1 1 \ i . 

v. m< 

M My friend," laid the royal arho pos- 

sessed all the irregular generosity of prina 
■n tin first person, lines I left Persia, who 
tnat<<l in' .itli bospitalit) and roluntarib 

efiered ne assistance in the war. Accept my 
friendship ; 1 receive you as my h tain 

your possessions, and permit me to -u j#j*l v the 

-ii thousand staters, which are wanting 
complete the four millioni von a lr ea d y poss' 
A man who gives from the property of the j * 1 1 ! >lio 
is seldom outdone in munificence. 
cioMof At length Xerxes arrived at Sardis, and 

B. C. 481. 

thence he despatched herald- into < 
manding the tribute of earth and water. At! 
and Sparta were the onlyciti( I by bis 


VI. While Xerxes re-ted at the Lydian city, an 
enterprise, scarcely less magnificent in com 
tion than that of the canal at Atho-. was com- 
pleted at the sacred passage of the Hellespont, 
Here, was constructed from the coast of Asia to 
that of Europe a bridge of boats, for the convoy 

* Differently computed ; according to Montfaucon, the 
sum total may be estimated at thirty-two millions of 
Louis d'ors. 


of the army. Scarce was this completed when BOOK 
I sudden tempest scattered the vessels, and 
rendered the labour vain. The unruly passion I 
of the high-spirited despot was popularly -aid 
to have evinced itself at this intelligence, b) 
commanding the Hellespont to receive three 
hundred lashes, and a pair of fettcri ■ itOf] 
recorded as a certainty by Herodotus, and m 
properly contemned as a fable by modern leeptt* 


A new bridge was now construeted under Dei 
artificers, whose industry i rpened by the 

fate of their unfortunate pivd«-. whom 

Xerxes condemned to death. These archi- 
tects completed at la>t two bridges of vessels, of 
various kinds and lizes, secured l»\ anchon of 
d length, and thus protected from the influence 

of the wind- that set in from the EuxinS on the 

one hand, and the south and south-east winds 

on the other. The elaborate description of 

this work given l»v Herodotus, proves it |Q 
have been no clumsy or unartistlike performative. 
The ships do not appear so much to have formed 
the bridge, as to have served for piers to sup- 
port its weight. Rafters of wood, rough timber, 
and layers of earth were placed m .tended 

cables, and the whole was completed by a fence 
on either side, that the horses and beasts of bur- 

i -2 

1 [6 M HI 

hook then might not be frightened l>\ the -inlit of the 

open sea. 
CHAP. ' 

v. \II. And now the work tu finished, the 

]\.c winter was passed, and ;it the dawn of returning 

spring, Xerxes led bit armament from Sardi 
Abydos. Ai the multitude commenced t ln-Ir 

march, it is laid that tin- sun was suddenly 

overcast, and an abrupt and utter darknesi crept 
Over the face of Heaven. The Magi * 
lemnly consulted at the omen ; and the} fore- 
told, that by the retirement of the sun, the 

tutelary divinity of the Greeks, was denoted tin- 
withdrawal of the protection of Heaven from 
that fated nation. — The answer pleased tin- 

On they swept — the conveyance of tin 
gage, and a vast promiscuous crowd of all nation-, 
preceding : behind, at a considerable interval, 
came the flower of tin- Persian army — a thousand 
horse — a thousand spearmen— the ten sacred 
steeds, called Nisaean, — the car of the great Per- 
sian God, drawn by eight snow-white horses, and 
in which no mortal ever dared to seat himself. 
Around the person of Xerxes were spearmen and 
cavalry, whose arms glittered with gold — the 
ten thousand infantry called " The Immortal 
of whom nine thousand bore pomegranates of 
silver at the extremity of their lances, and one 





thousand, pomegranates, of gold. Ten thousand book 
horsemen followed these : and far in the rear, 
the gorgeous procession closed with the mighty v 
multitude of the general army. 

The troops marched along the banks of the 
Caicus— over the plains of Thebes ; and passing 
Mount Ida to the left, above whose hoary i -r« -t 
broke a storm of thunder and lightning, they 
arrived at the golden Scamander, whose wai 
failed the invading thousands. Here it is poe- 
tically told of Xerxes, that he ascended tin- 
citadel of Priam, and anxiously and carefully 
surveyed the place, while the Magi of the 

Barbarian monarch directed libations to the 

manes of the Homeric lnn> 

VIII. Arrived at Abydos, the king reviewed 

his army. High upon an eminence, and on a 
seat of white marble, he >ur\e\ed the plain- 
covered with countless thousands, and the 
Hellespont crowded with will and mast-. .\f 
first, as he gazed, the lord of Persia felt all the 
pride and exultation which the command OTeTSO 
many destinies was calculated to inspire. But 
a sad and sudden thought came over him in the 

midst of his triumphs, and he burst into tears. k- 1 
reflect, "said he to Artabenus, (< on the transitory 

limit of human life. 1 compassionate this vast 
multitude - a hundred years hence, which oi 

II- ,s : 

boom flicin will -till be ;i living m tabaniM 


replied, like a philosopher, "that the -I 

CHAP. ' ' ' 

V. of life was IK. I i evil ; that mi-' 

and disea-e embittered tin- possession, ami that 
death was often the happiest refuge of the liv- 

in- "• 

At rarl\ daybi bile the arm 

waited the ritillg Of the SOD, tin v burnt 

perfumes on the bridge, an <l it with 

branches of the triumphal myrtle. As the ma 
lifted himselT above the east, Xerxes ponred • 
libation Into tl. and addressing t ) 1 « rising 

orb. Implored prosperity to the Persian at 
until they should have vanquished the whole of 
Kurope, even to the remotest ends. Then i 
i 1 1 *_i- the cup, with i Persian eimiter, into tin- 
sea, the signal was given tor the arm] 
commence the march. Seven days and se 
nighti were consumed in the pas-age of that 
prodigious armament. 

IX. Thus entering Europe, Xerxes pro- 
ceeded to Doriscus, (a wide plain of Thi 
commanded by a Persian garrison,) where he 
drew up, and regularly numbered, his tro- 

* It must be confessed that the tears of Xerxes were a 
little misplaced. He wept that men could not live a hundred 
years, at the very moment when he meditated destroying a 
tolerable portion of them as soon a> he possibly could. Senec. 
de Brev. Vit. c. 17. 


the fleets ranged in order along the neighbour- hook 

. Ill 

iiiL» eoast. The whole amount of the land fOK 
according to Herodotus, WSJ 1,700,000. Later \. 
writers have been sceptical as to this rial num- 
ber, but without sufficient ground* for their dis- 
belief. There were to be found the loldiery of 
many nations: — the Persians in tunies and 
seale breast-plates, the tiara helmet of the Med 

the arrows, and the large bow which vm their 
natural boeal and weapon ; there wi re the Hedei 
similarly equipped ; and the Assyrians, with bar- 
barous helmets, linen cuirasses, and huge els 
tipped with iron; the Bactriana with hows of 
reeds, and the Scythian with their hatch 

and painted crests. There, too, were thelight- 

clothed Indian-, the Parthian-, ( hora-inian-, 

Sogdians, Gandarians and theDadicss. Th< 

were the ( a>[>ians, elad in tOUgfa hide-, with 
hows and eiiniter- ; tfa of the 

Sarangse, and the loose-flowing vesti or sins) 

of the Arabians. There ■ n the e 

of /Ethiopian Nubia with palm bows tour eu- 
bits Long, arrows pointed with flint, and \ 

tares won from the leopard and the lion ; u bar- 
barous horde, who, after the wont of savages, dyed 
their bodies with gypsum and vermilion when 
they went to war ; while the straight- haired 
Asiatic /Ethiopians wore the same armour as the 


book Indians, whom tln\ bordered that rh< 


helmets were formed of the -kin of the hoi 

i liriid,* on which the main- was left in the place 

of plumage. The Libyans were amongst the 

horde, and the buskined Paphlagonians, \n i 1 1 i 

helms of net-work; and the Cappadocian 

rians; and tin- Phrygians; and the Armenian! 

tin- Lydians, equipped similarly to the Greeks; 

tin- Strvnionian Thracians, clad in tunic 

which were flowing robes like the Arabian i 

or tartan, lmt of various colour-, and buskin 

the skint of (awns, > armed with the javelin and 

the dagger; the Thracians, too, of Asia, with 

helmets of brass wrongta with tie ad horni 

of an ox ; the people from the islands of the 

<. armed and equipped like Medes . the M 

and the Colehians, and the Moschi, and other 

tribes, tedious to enumen lied and diver- 

sified the force <>f \i •]• 

Such were the infantry of the Persian a 
forg et ting not the ten thousand chosen Persians, 

called the Immortal Band. I whose armour shone 
with profuse gold, and who were distinguished 
even in war by luxury — carriages for their \\o 

* Common also to the antient Germans. 

f For this reason — whoever died, whether by diwfiltf or 
battle, had his place immediately supplied. Thus their num- 
ber was invariably the same. 


men, troops of attendants, and camels, and hook 

beasts of burthen. 

Besides these were the Persian cavalry ; tin- x 

nomad Sagartii, who carried with them nooses, 

in which they sought to entangle their for; the 

Medes and the Indian bone, wliieli last had 

also chariots of war drawn l>\ steeds or wild 
a ; the Bactrians and Caspians, equipped 

alike; the African.-., who fought from chariot 

the Paricanians ; and the Arabians with their 
swift dromedaries, completed the forces of the 
cavalry, which amounted to eighty thousand, 

exclusive r\r\i of chariot! and the eamels. 

.Nor was the naval unworthy of the land ar- 
mada. The Dumber of the triren* vie 

thousand tWO hundred and M\en. OftheSC the 
Phoenicians and the Syrians of Pal. -line fur- 
nished three hundred, the Serving-men with 

breast-plates of linen, javelins, bucklers without 
mil helmets fashioned nearly similarly t<> 

those of the Greeks; tWO hundred \< re 

supplied by the Egyptians, armed with huge bat- 
tle-axes, and casques of net-work; one hundred 
and fifty vessels eame from Cyprus, and one hun- 
dred from Cilieia ; those who manned the fir 
differing in arms from the Greeks only in the 
adoption of the tunic, and the Median mitres 
worn by the chiefs — those who manned the last, 



BOOK with two s|>< id tuni< »|. The I'ain 

pbvlians, < - 1 : t « I ;is the Greeks, contributed thirty 
vi. . and titt\ also were manned pj Lyciant 

with mantl it — kin and unfeathered an 

of reed. In thirty ressels came tin- Doriam 

q| .\»ia, ; in levent} the ' 'I in a hun- 

dred, the Hibju^ated [onians. Til 
between Ihe Cyaneae, and the promoiitonei pf 
Triopium and Sunium,* l'urni- 

■isrls, and the .KolianS lixty. The inhabitant- 

of the Hellespont, (those <»i Abydos alone 
i epted, wlio remained to defend the bi 
combined with the people of Pontut to supply 

a hundred more. In each reft*] Were detach- 
ments of Medes, Persians, and SacsB : the 
mariners were the Phoenicians, especially those 
of Sidon. The commanders-in-chief of the 

forces were Ariabignes, (son of Darin-,; Prex- 

es, Megebesue, (son of M« -. and 

Achaemenes, (brother of Xerxes, and satrap of 


Of the infantry, the generals were Mardoni 
Tritantaechmes, son of Artabanus, and Smcr- 
dones, (cousin to Xerxes,) Masistes, This broth 
Gergis, and Megabazus, son of that celebrated 
Zopyrus, through whom Darius possessed himself 
of Babylon. t 

* Diod. Sic. f See Note to p. 101. 



JIarmamithres and Tithaeus, who were Modes, ' ,M,K 

commanded the cavalry ; a third leader, l'har- 

nouches, died in consequence of a fall from hi- v. 
horse. But the name of a heroine, more n. 
culine than her colleagues, must not be omit- 
ted : Artemisia, widow to one <»t" the Carian 
kings, famished five ships, (the best in the hV 
next to those of Sidon,) irhich she commanded 

in person, celebrated alike for a dauntless cour; 
and a singular wisdom. 

\. Such were the forces which the Great 
King reviewed, passing through the land Ion 

in his chariot, and through the fleet in a Sido- 

nian vessel, beneath ■ golden canopy. After his 
survey, the king summoned Demaratoi so hi> 

"Think you.'* said lie, " that the Greeks will 
presume to resist bk 

u Sire,*' answered the Spartan. •• yourpropo- 
sition of servitude will be rejected by the 

( "reeks ; and even if the rest of them sided 

with you, Lacedannon >till would give you battle ; 

question not in what numbers ; had Sparta but 
a thousand men she would oppOSO you/' 

Marching onward, and forcibly enlisting, by 
the way, various tribes through which he passed, 
exhausting many streams, and impoverishing 
the population condemned to entertain hi- 

124 \ 1 1 1 1 i 

book army, Xi-rxrs ;u ri \ • <l at Acanthus: there 
lie dismissed the commanders of lii- H 

< HAP. . . 

vi. denog them to wait lii- orders al rhern 
tnuul town which gave its name to the I li< nnesai 
(iiilf. to which tli.v proceeded, pressing -ln'jt- 

;iinl setaieil bj tin- way, ami ning 

Thermfe* bimselt encamped bis army on tl 

intending bur ami wide it- iiiultitudinoiii at 

from Thcriim ami uia to tl < I i;i- 

ami llaliacmon. 





the 11.1:1 r DESPATCHED rO ABTBM lUUM, Uf D TBI FAM 01 
THKEMOPYLA OCCUPIED NUMBERS 01 nil okkuian 11. Et 1 
— BAin.i: Of NWM0P1 1 1 

I. The first preparations of the Persians did not ' !(M »k 
produce the effect which might have been anti- CIIAP 
eipated in the Grecian itates. Flat from nnitiiig KL 
against the common foe, they -till cherished ■ 
frivolous and unreasonable jealousy of each other. 
Several readily sent the symbols of their allegi- 
ance to the Persian, including the whole of 
Bosotia, except only the Thespians and Platssans. 
The more timorous states imagined tfcetnaeWei 
safe from the vengeance of the Barbarian ; the 
more resolute were overwhelmed with dismay. 

The renown of the Median arm- \\a> universally 
acknowledged : for in spite of Marathon, Greece 
had not yet learnt to despise the foreigner; and 
the enormous force of the impending armament 

1001 was accurately known from tin- ~\>'\<* end dc 

urten of the Grecian states, who abounded in 


vl the Barbarian camp. Even united, the whole 

navy of Gra mad insnfficieni to con- 

tend against such a foe; and, divided anio 
tln-iii-el \ c-, lerera] of the states were disposed 
rather to succumb than fco resist, And 

here," says the father of history, "I (eel cmii- 
pelled to assert an opinion, however invidioos 

it niav lie to many. If the Athenian-, ft Tri- 
fled by the danger, had forsaken their coun- 
try, or submitted to the Persian, Xerxes would 

have met with no resistance by sea. The I 
d.enionians, deserted by their allies, would have 
died with honour or yielded from necessity, and 
all Greece have been reduced to the Persian 
yoke. The Athenians were thus the deliv< 
of Greece. They animated the ardour of those 
states yet faithful to themselves ; and next to the 
gods, they were the true repelleri of the invader. 
Even the Delphic oracles, dark and ominoni 
they were, did not shake their purpose, nor in- 
duce them to abandon Greece." — When even the 
deities themselves seemed doubtful, Athens 
unshaken. The messengers despatched by the 
Athenians to the Delphic oracle received indeed 
an answer well calculated to appal them. 

" Unhappv men," cried the priestess, " leave 

* Her. lib. vii. c. 138. 


your houses and the ramparts of the city, and "2?* 
fly to the uttermost parts of the earth. Fire and CHAP 
keen Mars compelling the Syrian chariot, shall VI - 
destroy, towers shall beover thrown, and temples 
destroyed by fire. Lo ! now, even DOW, tl 
stand dropping sweat, and their house-tops black 
with blood, and shaking with prophetic awe — 
Depart and prepare for ill !" 

II. Cast into the deepest affliction by thi- 
response, the Athenians yet, with the garb and 
symbols of suppliants, renewed their application. 

"Answer us," they said, "O supreme God, 
answer us more propitiously, or we Will not de- 
part from vour sanctuary, but remain here even 

until death." 

The second answer seemed leas severe than the 
first : " Minerva is unable to appease the ( Olym- 
pian Jupiter. Again, therefore, 1 speak, and 
1 1 1 > words are as adamant. All else within the 

bounds of Cecropia and the bosom of the divine 
Cithaeron, shall fall and fail you. The wooden wall 
alone Jupiter grants to Pallas, a refuge to your 
children and yourselves, Wait not for ho 
and foot — tarry not the march of the mighty 
army — retreat, even though thev elose upon you. 
O Salamis the divine, thou shalt lose the sons 
of women, whether Ceres scatter or hoard her 
harvest !" 

A'l l 

booi III. Writing down this reply, the ■••ten 
returned t<> Athens. Many and contradicl 

< II \l\ 

\ i. were the attempts made t<> interpret the i 
■ponse; tome believed thai by a wooden wall 
was. meant the citadel, formerlj mrronnded by 

a palistdc of WOO<L Othefl affirmed thai the 

enigmatica] eiprecsian signified the fleet. Bui 
t ]i« ii the eonelnding words perplexed them. 
the apostrophe t<> Salamis appeared to den 
il< -tructioii mill defeat At this juncture 1 be- 
in i-t « xl< - approved himself worthy of the po- 
sition be had attained. It i- probable thai In- 
had purchased the oracle to which be round ■ 
ready and bold solution. He upheld tli 
to the ships, but denied that in tin apostroph 
Salamis any evil to Athens was denoum 
•• Had," said 1"'. *■ the prediction of lo-s and 
slaughter referred to the Athenian-, would 
lamis have been called "divine?' 1 would it not 
have been rather called the "wretched" if tin- 
Greeks were doomed to perish near that isle I 
The oracle threatens not the Athenians but tin- 
enemy. Let us prepare then to engage the Bar- 
barian by sea. Our ships are our wooden walls.'" 
This interpretation, as it was the more encou- 
raging, so it was the more approved. The 
sels already built from the revenues of the mines 
of Laurion, were now destined to the safety of 


IV. It was, however, before 1 1 1 « * arrival of tin- book 

Persian envoys* and when tin- Greeks first „ 


woke to the certainty, that the vast preparations V| - 
of Xerxes menaced Greece as the earliest victim, 
that a congress, perhaps at the onset confined to 
the Peloponnesian states, met at Corinth. At the 
head of this confederate council, necessarily 
ranked Sparta, which w;i> the master state of the 
Peloponnesus. Hut in policy and debate, if not 
in arms, she appears always to have met with a 
powerful rival in Corinth, the diplomacy of 

whose wealthy and liberal commonwealth often 

counteracted the propositions of the Spartan de- 

legal To this congress suhsecpientlv eanie 

the envoys of all the states thai refused tribute and 
homage to the Persian king. The institution of 
this Hellenic council, which ws ause oi the 

salvation of Gr - a proof of the political 

impotence of the old Amphictyonic league. 

The Svnediion of Corinth, (or rather of that 
Corinthian village that had grown up round 
the temple of Neptune, and is styled the Isth- 
mus by the Creek writer-, was the true his- 
torical Amphictyony of Hellas. 

In the Isthmian Congress the genius of The- 
mistocles found an ampler sphere than it had 
hitherto done amongst the noisy cabals of Athens. 

* M tiller on the Greek Congress. 


180 \ i in • 

B 99* Of all tlir ( rreek delegates, the 
(in(1 man wfl -nil in accomplishing the 

primary object of the confederacy, riz. in re- 

moi injj,- the jealousies and the di thai 

hitherto existed among*! tin- rtates which com- 
posed it. In this, perhaps the most difficult, 
the in" tial, t;i-k , Themistoclet 1<-<1 

l>v a Tegean, named Chileus, who, though hd 
rarely appears upon 1 1 1 * • external stage of 
seems to ha\ «• been eminently skilled in tin- in- 
tricate and entangled politic- of the time. The- 
mistodes, into irhose hands the Athenian repub- 
lic, at this period, confided the trust not mor< 
its interests than its resentments, set the example 
of concord ; and Athens, for awhile. ited 

to reconciliation and amity with the hated /Egina. 
All the proceedings of this illustrious <■< 
were characterized by vigilant prudence and 
decisive energy. As soon as Xerxes arrived in 
Sardis, emissaries -patched to watch the 

movements of the Persian army, and at th< same 
period, or rather some time before,* amba 
were sent to Corcyra, Crete, Argos, and to Syra- 
cuse then under the dominion of Gelo. Thi- 
man, from the station of a high-born and power- 
ful citizen of Gela, in Sicily, had raised himself 
partly by military talents, principally by a pro- 

* Miiller on the Greek Congn 



found and dissimulating policy, to the tyranny of 1 - OOK 
Gela and of Syracuse. His abilii re re- .,...., 

markable, liis power great; nor on tli in s _^_ 

continent was tliere one state that could com- 
mand the force and the n that were at 
the disposal of the Syracusau prince. 

The spies despatched to Sardia were disco- 
vered, seized, and would have been put to death, 
but for the interference of Xerxes, who dis- 
missed them, after directing them to be led 
round his army, iu the hope that their return 
from the terror of such a Bpectacle would, m<> 
than their death, intimidate and appal their 


, The mission to ArgOS, which, tfl a lYlopoui: 

sian city, was one of the earliest applied I 

unsuccessful. That state still Buffered the exhai 
tion which followed the horrible massacre perpe- 
trated by Cleomenes, the Spartan kiicj;, who had 
burnt six thousand Argivesin the precincts of the 
Sanctuary to which they had fled. New chang 
of government had followed this fatal lo>s, and the 
servile population had been enabled to seize the 
privileges of the free. Thus, hatred to Sparta, 
a weakened soldiery, an unsettled internal go- 
vernment, all conspired to render Argos luke- 
warm to the general cause. Yet that state did 
not openly refuse the aid which it secretly re- 

k 2 

132 ATM I 

hook sol\c<l to withhold. It consented to i<>'m the 
common league n jn m two condition! . an equal 
1 1 share with the Spartans in the command, and s 
trace of thirty years with those crafty and merci- 
less neighbours. The Spartans proposed to com- 
promise the former condition by allowing to the 
krgive king nol indeed half the command, hut 
;i voice equal to thai of each <>f r lnir own ki: 
To tin- latter condition they offered no objection. 
Glad of an excuse to retaliate on th< Spartans 
their own haughty insolence, the Arg 
rejected the proposition, and ordered the Spartan 
ambassador to quit their territories before 3ui 
ButArgos, though the chief city of Argolis, had 
nol her customary influence over the other to 
of that district, in which the attachment to On 
was stronger than the jealous apprehensions of 

The embassy to Sicily was not more successful 
than that to Argos. Gelo agreed indeed to 
furnish the allies with a considerable force, bttt 
only on the condition of obtaining for Sicily the 
supreme command, either of the land force 
claimed by Sparta, or of the naval fore- 
which Athens already ventured to pretend : an 
offer to which it was impossible that the Greeks 
should accede, unless they were disposed to sur- 
render to the craft of an auxiliary the liberties 



they asserted against the violence of a foe. The B J* )K 
Spartan and the Athenian ambassadors alike, 
and with equal indignation, rejected the proposals v ' 
of Gelo, who, in fact, had obtained the tyranny 
of his native city, by first securing the command 
of the Gelan cavalry. The prince of Syra- 
cuse was little affected by the vehement scorn 
of the ambassadors. " I see you arc in more 
want of troops than commanders," said he 
wittily. "Return then, till the Greeks this 
year will be without its spring For as the 
spring to the year did ( Jelo consider his assist- 
ance to Greece. From Sicily the ambassadors 
repaired to Corcyra. Here tins were b\ 

flattering promises, but tin- governors of thai In- 
triguing and factions state fitted ont a tint oi 
H\t\ vessels, stationed near Pylos, off the ooasJ 
of Sparta, to wait the issue of events, assuring 
Xerxes on the one hand of their indisposition to 
oppose him, and pretending afterward- to the 
Greeks, on the other, that tlie adverse wind- 
alone prevented their taking -bare in the en- 
gagement at Salamis. The Cretan- vers not 
more disposed to the cause than the Corc\ raan- : 
they found an excuse in an oracle of Delphi, and 
indeed that venerable shrine appears to hare 
been equally dissuasive of resistance to all the 
states thai consulted it ; although the daringof the 


booi Athenians had construed the ambiguous men; 


into a favourable omen. The threats <>| -u i>« i -i i - 

CHAP. . . ' 

\ i. tioo become l>ut incitements to courage when in- 
terpreted by the btt\ 

\ . Ami now the beadle army bad crowed the 
Hellespont, and the Thesealians perceiving that 
they were t!i<- next objects of attack, despatched 
aaabasi is at tin- Isthm 

Those Thesaalian chiefs called the Aleut 
had, it i- true, i 1 1 \ i t • « 1 \ the invasion of 

( rreeee. lint preci-eU hoc 
tin- chiefs, tin; arrival of th Gi ai King 
dre;idc(l by the people. By the aid of I 
nans, tin- Alenadse trust d to extend their pt 
ever thair own country, — an ambition with which 
it is not to be supposed that tin- people they 
assisted to subject would sympathize ord- 

tngry, while Xerxes was to tin: chiefs an all-, 
the people he remained a foe. 

These Thessalian envoys proclaimed their wil- 
lingness to assist the confederates in the defence 
of their Father-land, but represented the immi- 
nence of the danger to Thessaly, and demanded 
an immediate supply of forces. " Without this, 
they 7 said, " we cannot exert ourselves for vou, 
and our inability to assist vou will be our excuse, 
if we provide for our own safety. 

Aroused by these exhortations, the confederates 



commenced their military movements. A body book 
of infantry passed the Euripus, entered Thessaly, 
and encamped amidst the delights of the vale VI. 
of Tempe. Here their numbers, in all ten thou- 
sand heavy-armed troops, were joined by the 
Thessalian horse. The Spartan- were led b\ 
Ku;enetus. Theniistocles commanded the Athe- 
nians. The army did not long, howevi -r, 
main in the encampment. Alexander, the kin^i 
of Macedon, sent confidentially advising their 
retreat, and explaining accurately tin- force of 
the enemy. This adviee eoneurred with the 
discovery that there was another pejMgti into 
Thessaly through the higher MgAOlM of M;. 
donia, which exposed them to be taken in the 
rear: And, in truth, it was through tin 
Bage that the Persian army ultimately marched. 
The Greeks, therefore, broke up the eamp and 
returned to the Isthmus. The Thessalian>, thu- 
ahandoned, instantly treated with the invad 
and became among the staunehe>t allitl of 


It was n>>w finally agreed in the Isthmian 
Congress, that the most advisable plan would be 
to defend the Past of Thennopylie, as being 
both nearer and narrower than that of Thessaly. 
The fleet they resolved to send to Artemisium 
on the coast of llistiajotis, a place sufficiently 

136 A 1 II INS : 

iio(»K neighbouring Thermopyla alio* ul 

communication* Never, perhaps, have the 
( ■ 1 1 \ i • 
m. Ghreeki shown more militar} skill than in the 

choice of these stations. Hut our pan in those 
mountainous diatricti permitted the deacenl of 
the Paraiaa army from Theesaly bounded to 
the west by steep and inaoceaeible clifts, extend- 
ing aaCnr as mount (£ » the east l>\ shoali 
ainl the neighbouring sea. This defile i 
it- name Thermopyla?, or Hot I rom the bofr 
Bpringi which it the base of the mountain. 
In remote timet the pastoral Phociam I *;»«1 
fortified 1 1 1 « - plate sgainat the incursions of the 
Thessalians, and the decayed remains of tin- 
wall and g t tlnir ancient gunisOD I 

-till existent in the middle of the p bile, 

by marsh and mo cder th< 

more impassable, they had inhered the hot- 
mringe to empty themselves along the plain, 
llir Thrnoalisn side, and the quagmire was *till 
sodden and unsteady. The country on either 
Bide the Thermopyla- was so contracted, that 
before, near the river Phoenix, and behind, near 
the village of Alpeni, was at that tin i only 

for a single chariot. In such a pass the numbers 
and the cavalry of the Mede were rendered un- 
available ; while at the distance of about fifteen 
miles from Thermopylae, the ships of the 



Grecian navy rode in the narrow sea, off the book 


projecting shores of Euboea, equally fortunate ([|U , 
in a station which weakened the force of mini- _vl 
hers and allowed the facility of I Street. 

The sea-station was possessed by the allied 
ships. Corinth sent forty; Megan twenty; 
£gina eighteen; Sicyon twelve; Sparta tea; 

fa Kpidanrians contributed eight ; the Eretrian- 

leven ; the Troezenians, five ; the [tyrseans and 

the people of Ceos each two, and the Opuntian 
Locrians, seven ressels of fifty ears. The total 

of these ships, (without reckoning those of fifty 
oars, supplied by the LocriaUS, and tWO bark- 

of the same description, which added t<» die 
quota sent b\ the people of Ceos, amount t«» 

one hundred and twenty-four. The Athenian 

force, alone, numbered more retsek than all 
the other confederates, and contributed 
hundred and twenty-seven triremes, pmtK 

manned b\ l'lata-ans, besides twenty vessels 

lent to tin- Chalcidians, who equipped and 

manned them. The Athenian fleet w a< eoin- 

manded by Themistoclea. The land force at 
Thermopylae consisted chiefly ofPeloposmasisni : 
its numbers were as follows : — three hundred 
heavy-armed Spartan- ; five hundred Tegeans; 
five hundred Mantimvans ; one hundred and 
twenty Orchomenians ; one thousand from the 


,1( ' OK other kIv ; tWQ hi.ndivd from 

( . jm , Phlius; eighty from Mycenae. Boeotia coa>j 
vi. tributed seven hundred Thespians, and 

hundred Tbebansj the Last bad been specially 
lelected bj Leonidaa, th<- Spartan chief) 
of the general mspicion that the Thebani i 
a tt ac he d to the Medea, and be d< sired, th 
tore, to approve them ai friends, or know them 

Uthough tin- sentiments of the J 
bam arere hostil< Herodotus, th 

the assistance required. In addition to ti. 
were one thousand Phociana, and a band of the 

Opuntian Locrians, nnnmnhcn-d by Herodo 

hnt variously estimated, by Diodorui at one thou- 
Band, and more probably, by Pausaniaf at no 
Less than seven thousand. 

The chief command was entrusted, accord- 
ing to the claims of Sparta, to Leonidaa, the 
younger brother of* the frantic Cleomenes,* by 
a different mother, and hu successor to the 
Spartan throne. 

There are men whose whole life is in a -ingle 
action. Of these, Leonidas is the most eminent. 

* Anaxaiidrides, king of Sparta, and father of Cleomenes 
and Leonidas, had married his niece : she was barren. The 
Ephors persuaded him to take another wife ; he did so, and by 
the second wife, Cleomenes was born. Almost at the same 
time, the first wife, hitherto barren, proved with child. And 
as she continued the conjugal connexion, in process of time 



We know little of him, until the last few days of B ° 1 ° K 
his career. He seems, as it were, born but to CHU , 
show how much glory belongs to a brave death. x _^ 
Of his character or genius, his general virtues 
and vices, his sorrows and his joys, biography 
can scarcely gather even the materials for con- 
jecture. He passed from an obscure existence 
into an everlasting name. And history dedical 
her proudest pages to one of whom the ha- 
nothing but the epitaph to relate. 

As if to contrast the little band under the 
command of Leonidas, Herodotus again enu- 
merates the Persian fon Ued a- it qoh i 
by many contributions, forced and voluntary, 

since its departure from DoiitCIU lb' nstimnl 

the total by sea and land, thus augmented, at 
two millions six hundred and forty one thou- 
sand six hundred and ten fighting men, and 
computes the number of the menial attendant-, 
the motley multitude that folk) wed the arma- 
ment, at an equal number ; so that the - 
of Darius conducted, hitherto without diaasJ 
to Sepias and Thermopylae, a body of five mil- 
lions two hundred and eighty-three thousand 

three sons were born ; of theeei Leonidas was the seeond. 
But Cleomenes, though the offspring of the seeond wife, 
came into the world belbre the children by the first wife, 
and therefore had the prior right to the throne. 

I 10 



\ I. 

two hundred md twentj human beings.* And 
i ,, AI . out of tl ii— pfondrom concourse, oone in 

jetty ;in(l grace of person, tayi Herodotus, sur- 
passed the royal Leader. Hut such advanta 
at belong to superior stature the kings of 
Persia obtained by artificial means, and w<- learn 
from Xenophon, thai they irore a peculiar kind of 
shoe SO constructed as to increase; their height. 

VI. The fled of Xerxes, moving from Ther- 
nic, obtained sonic partial success at n of 

their vessels despatched loSciathos, captured a 
guard-ship of Trcezene, and sacrificed upoo tin- 
prow a Greek named Leon ; the beaurj of 
his person obtained him thai disagreeable | 
ference. A vessel <>t" ASgins fell also into 
their hands, the ere* of which they treated ;i- 
slaves, save only one hero, Pytheas, endeared 
even to the enem\ by his valour ; a third vessel, 
belonging to the Athenians, was taken at the 
mouth of the Peneus; the seamen, however, had 
previously debarked, and consequently escap- 
ed. Beacons apprized the Greek station at Arte- 
misiuni of these disasters, and the fleet retreated 
for a while to Chalcis, with a view of guarding 

* It is impossible by any calculations to render this amount 
more credible to modern scepticism. It is extremely likely 
that Herodotus is mistaken in his calculation ; but who shall 
correct him ? 


the Euripus. But a violent storm off the coast of hook 

„ hi. 

Magnesia suddenly destroying no less than four 

hundred of the barbarian vessels, with a eon- IX 
giderable number of men and great treasury tin- 
Grecian navy returned to Artenii-inm. 

Here they soon made a capture of fifteen of 
tin- Persian vessels, which, taking them tbf 
friends, sailed right into the midst of then. 
Witli this exception the rest of the Barbarian 

fleet arrived safely at Apheta\ 

VII. Meanwhile the mighty land force of t lit- 

Greal King, passing through Theasarv and 

Aehaia, arrived at last at the with' Trachinian 

plains, which stretching along the ihores of 
Thessaly, forty miles in cirenmference, and ad- 
jacent to the straits of Thennopvla-, allowed 

space for the encampment of hia army. 

The Greeks at Thermopyla? beheld the ap- 
proach of Xerzefl with dismay ; they had anti- 
bipated considerable reinforcement- from the 

confederate Btates, especially Sparta, which I 
had determined to commit all her itrength to 

the campaign, leaving merely a mall detach- 
ment for the defence of the capital. But the 
Cameian festival in honour of the great Dorian 

Apollo, at Sparta, detained the Lacetheinonian-. 

and the Olympic games diverted the rot of the 
allies, not yet expecting an immediate battle. 
The vicinity of Xerxes, the absence of the 

142 *' 

hook rcinfonviin'iiN they expected, produced en alaxn* 

ed and anxioui council ; Leonidai dissuaded tl»c 
chap. , , . , 

m. confederate! from retreat, ana despatched mes- 

t<» the various static uririi 
of Bupplies, and stating the hop< lessness of opJ 
poling tin- Mode ■flectoally with the 


\« r\< ■-. in tli.- meanwhile, who had li« :» i*« i tl 
an insignificant bond were assembled und 
Spartan descendant of Hercules, I bit 

progress, despatched a spy to ooitretheir 

Dumber and their movements. The ends 
srai able only to inspect those without the 
trenchment, who, at that time, happened to be 
the S partan s; he found that singular race en- 
gaged in gymnastic e . and dr< Being their 
long hair for the festival of battle. Although 
they perceived the spy, they suffered him 
gaze at his leisure, and he returned in g 
the king. 

Much astonished at the account he received, 
Xerxes sent for Demaratus, and detailing to him 
what the messenger had seen, inquired what it 
might portend, and whether this handful of 
men amusing themselves in the defile could se- 
riously mean to resist his arms. 

" Sire," answered the Spartan, " it is their 
intention to dispute the pass, and what your 
messenger has seen proves that they are pre- 



paring accordingly. It is the custom of the book 
Spartans to adorn their hair on the eve of any CHU , 
enterprise of danger. You are advancing to _^_ 
attack the flower of the Grecian valour."' Xerxes, 
still incredulous that opposition could he - 
riously intended, had the coin wait four 

days to give the enemy leisure to retreat ;— in the 
interim he despatched a m< r to Leonid 

demanding Ids arms. " Come ami take them '" 
replied the Spartan. 

VIII. On the fifth day the patience of \ 
was exhausted, and lie sent a detachmentof Me 

and Cissians* into the patfl n\ i 1 1 i unlets to bring 
its rash and obstinate defender- alive into hi- 

presence. The Modes and Cissians srere 

pulsed with considerable loss. " The Immortal 
Band" wcii- now ordered to advance under the 

command of Hydarnes. Hut even the skill 
and courage of that warlike troop were equally 

unsuccessful, their numbers were crippled l»y 
the narrowness of the pass, and their short 
weapons coped to great disadvantage with the 

long spears of tin 1 Greeks. The engagement 

was renewed a second day, with the like fortune; 
the loss of the Persians was great, although the 

* The Cissii, or Cissians, inhabited the then fertile province 
of Snsinna, in which was situated the capital of Susa. They 
resembled the Persians in dros and mania 

Ill A I Hf.N'S 


( II \l\ 
\ I. 

ntv numbers of th< also m 

what iliiiiini-li- .1 

In the midst of the perplexity which | 
the kind's oouiK '.il." after this defeat, then 
tired at the Persian camp one Ephialtea, ■ 
lian. Influenced by the hope 
thif traitoi demanded and obtained an audiei 
in w 1 1 i < • 1 1 he offered to conduct the Mi de« through 
aseerel path acroai the mountains, into the pass. 
The offer was joyfully accepted, and Elydarn 
with the forces under his command, was despatch- 
ed under the guidance of the Malian. At the dusk 
of evening the detachment 1« it the camp, and 
marching all oighi, from the n 
tweeo the mountain- of (Eta on the rigfct hand. 
and the Trachinian ridges on the left, thej found 
themseh as, at the earl) dawn, at the summit 
the hill, on which a thousand Phociana had h 

stationed to defend the pa--, lor it RT8J not unknown 

to the Spartan-. In the silence of dawn, the) 
wound through the thick groves of oak thai clad 

the ascent, and concealed the glitter of their 
arms ; but the exceeding stillness of the air 
casioned the noise they made in trampling on the 
leaves,* to reach the ears of the Phocians. That 

* So Herodotus (lib. vii. c. 218;) — but, as it was sum- 
mer, tbe noise was probably made rather by the boughs that 
obstructed the path of the barbarians, than by leaves on 
the ground. 




band sprang up from the earth on which they had hook 

• in. 

slept, to the consternation and surprise of the 
invader-, and precipitately betook them* 
arms. The Persians, though unprepared for an 
my at this spot, drew up in battle arrav, and 

the heavy onslaught of their arrow* drove the 
Phoclans to seek a better Blieltei up the moun- 
tains, not imagining that the passage into the 
defile, but their own destruction, was the ob 
of the enterprise. The Persians prudently for- 
bore pursuit, but availing themselves «>t the 
path now open to their progress, rapidly 
tided tin- Opposite side of tin' mountain. 

IX. Meanwhile, dark and luperstitious terror- 

were at work in the Grecian camp. The pre- 
ceding eve ile' soothsayer Vfegistias bad in- 
spected tie' entrails and Id that death 

lited the defender- of Therniop\ he in the 
morning, and on that fatal night a ( uimean 
deserter* from the Persian camp had joined 
Leonidas, and informed him of the treachen. 

Ephialtes. At early day their i onfirm- 

ed by the Sentinels posted on the mountain-, 
who fled into the defile at the approach of the 

A hasty couneil w mbled ; -ome were 

for remaining, some for flight The council 

* Diod. Sic. xi. viii. 

VOL. 11. 

146 A'lHIA 

book ended with the resolution of I general retn 

probably with the a — mi. possibly b\ tbe iu- 
9i. itannoi, of Leonidat, irho irai contented I 

seas the monopoly of glorv and of death. Tha 

laws of tbe Spartans forbade them to fly from 

any enemy, however Dumeroot, and Leonidai 

did not vniture to di*ob«v them, bapl 

lii- resolution was strengthened by an oradc of 

that Delphi m peculiarly renerated by the 
Dorian race, and which foretold either the fall 

of Sparta, or the sacrifice of a Spartan kin 
the blood of Hercules. To men a hole 

happiness was renown, life had no temptation 
equal to such ■ death ! 

X. Lconidas and hii countrymen deter- 
mined to keep the field. The Thespians alone 
voluntarily remained to partake hit fate ; but he 
detained also the suspected Thebans, rather as a 
hostage than an auxiliary* The rest of the 
confederates precipitately departed across the 
mountains to their native cities. Leonidas 
would have dismissed the prophetic sooth- 
sayer, but Megistias insisted on his right to 
remain ; he contented himself with sending 
away his only son, who had accompanied the 
expedition. Even the stern spirit of Leonidas 
is said to have yielded to the voice of nature ; 
and he ordered two of his relations to return to 



Sparta to report the state of affairs. " Vuu book 

prescribe to us the duties of messengers, not of 
soldiers," was the reply, as the warriors W. 
buckled on their shields, and took their posts 
with the rest. 

If history could penetrate from events 
into the hearts of the agents, it would be in* 
tt resting even to conjecture the feelings of 
this devoted band, awaiting the approach of a 
certain death, in that solitary defile. Their 
enthusiasm, and that rigid and Spartan spirit, 

which had made all ties subservient to obedt- 

ence to the law— all excitement tame to that of 
battle — all pleasure dull to the anticipation of 

glory, — probably rendered the boon preceding 

death the most enviable ol their lives. Th 
might have exulted in the -am. elevating fana- 
ticism which distinguished afterwards the fol- 
lowers of Mahomet ; and S6CII that opening 
paradise in immortality below, which the Mos- 
lemin beheld in anticipation abovi 

\1. Early on that awful booming, Xerxes 

offered a solemn libation to his Gods, and at the 
middle of tin; noon, when Hvdarnes might be 
supposed to be close upon the rear of the enemv, 
the Barbarian troops commenced their inarch. 
Leonidas and his band advanced beyond their 
entrenchment, into the broader part of the 

i. 2 

\ i iii.n's : 

hook defile. Before the fury of their despair, the 

Persians fell in (Treat numbers, many of them 

< ii ip. 

1 1 were hurled into tl Iden down 

and crushed by the p re ss of their own num- 

When the spears of the < hreeki irere shii 
in pieces, they bed recourse to their -word-, and 
the battle iras fought hand t<» hand : Tim- fi^M- 
inu\ t'i'll Leooidas, surrou nded in death by many 
of his band, of rarious distinction and renown. 
Two half-brotheri of Xerxes, mingling In die 
foremost of the frav. contended tor the body of 
the Spartan king; and perished by the Grecian 

For a short time the Spartans repelled the 
Persian crowd, who, where valour tailed to B 
them on, were scourged to the charge by the 
lash of their leaders, and drew the body of 
Leonidas from the press ; and now. winding 
down the pass, Hydarnes and his detachment 
descended to the battle. The scene then he- 
came changed, the Spartans retired, still un- 
daunted, or rather made yet more desperate 
as death drew near, into the narrowest of the 
pass, and, ranged upon an eminence of the 
strait, they died — fighting, even after their 
weapons were broken, with their hands and 
teeth — rather crushed beneath the number, than 


slain l>y the swords of the foe, — " non rati §ed BOOH 
vincendo fatiqati."* 


XI I. Two Spartans of the three hundred, Euryt us \ i. 
and Aristodenms, had, in consequence of ■ -evere 
disorder in the eyes, been permitted to sojourn 
at Alpeni ; but Eurytus, hearing of tin- rout- 
was led by his helot into the Held, and died with 
his countrymen, Aristodemus alone remained, 
branded with disgrace on liis return to Sparta ; 
but subsequently redeeming his name at tin- 
battle of Platsea. | 

The Thebans, beholding the victory of the 
Persians, yielded their arms; and. excepting 
few, slain as they approached, not 
suppliants, were pardoned l>\ Xen 

The king himself eame to \ie\\ the dead, and 

especially the corpse of Leonidas. He ordered 

the head of that hero to be cut off, and hi- body 

suspended on across,^ an instance of sodden 
passion, rather than customary barbarity. For 

# Justin, ii. ix. 

t Another Spartan, who had been sent into Thessaly, and 
was therefore absent from the slaughter of Thermopv 
destroyed himself. 

% The cross was the usual punishment in Persia, for 
offences against the king's majesty or rights. Perhaps, there- 
fore, Xerxes, by the outrage, only desired to signify that he 
considered the Spartan as a rebel. 

L50 viiii-. 

>k of all nations the Mercians most honoured valour, 

in. . 

ii in their toes. 

\i. MM. 'Dm- moral MUM of mankind which 

place- the ewnplc ifice among the 

noblest lesson Inch our nature ran ho 

corn etcd, has justly immortalized the memory 
of Leon i das. It is impossible t<» question the 
virtue of the man, hut we may fairly dispute 
the wisdom of the system he adorned. We may 
douht irhether, in faet, his death ser\'<l fail 
country so much as bil life \\(»uld have done. 
It was the distinction of Tlennopx be, that its 
heroes died in obedience to the laws ; it WM 
the distinction of Marathon, that it- in . 
lived to defeat the invader and preserve their 
country. And in proof of this distinction, ire 
find afterwards, at IMata?a. that of all the allied 
Greeks the Spartans the most feared the con- 
querors of Thermopyla- ; the Athenians the 
least feared the fugitives of Marathon. 

XIV. Subsequently, on the hill to which the 
Spartans and Thespians had finally retired, a lion 
of stone was erected by the Amphictyons, in 
honour of Leonidas ; and many years afterwards 
the bones of that hero were removed to Sparta, 
and yearly games, at which Spartans only were 
allowed to contend, were celebrated round his 
tomb. Separate monuments to the Greeks 


generally, and to the three hundred who had BOM 
refused to retreat, were built also, In the Am- 

( HAP. 

phictyons, at Thermopylae. Long extent, DOS- vi. 

terity admired the inscriptions which they bore ; 
that of the Spartans became proverbial for it- 
sublime conciseness. 

" Go, stranger," it laid, " and tell the Spar- 
tans that we obeyed the law — ami Lie her 

The private friendship of Simonidei the poet 
erected also a monument to Megistias, the 
soothsayer, in which it was said truly to his 

" That the fate he foresaw, he remained to 

Such is the historj tf the battle of Thermo- B.C 

« ** Thus fought the GrcifAl at Thermopylae," are the 
■imple exprewiona of Herodotu*, lib. vii. c« 

;VJ - vthi 


mi \i»\ : 

OFF Alt! l.Mlsn H I in: ORBBKtf KETREAT-TH kMI IN- 

AND EMBARK POB I \ l.\ M IS - I II C I ltlU >oi.( I E AND 81 

iMH.icYdFTHK i' nun and ran 







hook I. After the victory of Thermopylae, Demaratus 

advised the Persian monarch to despatch a de- 
en ap. 
\ n. ' tachment of three hundred vessels to the Laco- 

nian coast, and seize the island of Cythera, 
of which a Spartan once, (foreseeing how ea.-ilv 
hereafter that post might be made to com- 
mand and overawe the Laconian capital,) had 
said, " It were better for Sparta if it were sunk 
into the sea." The profound experience of De- 
maratus in the selfish and exclusive policy <>t 
his countrymen, made him argue that, if this 


were done, the fean of Sparta lor benelf would hook 
prevent her joining the fore*- of the rest of (11U> 
Greece, and leave the latter ■ more 68SJ prey V1L 
to the invader. 

The advice, fortunately tor the Greek*, was 

over-ruled by AchflBmen 

Meanwhile the Grecian na\ \ . assembled off 
Artemisium, was agitated by divert councils. 
Beholding the vast number of Barbarian shipi 

now collected at Apheta*, and the whole shores 

around swarming with hostile troops, the Greeks 
debated the necessity of retreat. 

The fleet was under the command of Kur\- 

biades, the Spartan. For although Athens fur- 
nished a force equal to all the rest <>f the all 
together, and might justly therefore have pre- 
tended to the command, yet the jealousy of the 

confederates, long ACCUStomed to viehl to the 
claims of Sparta, and unwilling- to acknow ledgi 
new superiority in another state, had induced the 
Athenians readily to forego their claim. And this 
especially at the instance of Themistocles. "To 
him," says Plutarch, H Greece not only on 
her preservation, but the Athenians in parti- 
cular the glory of surpassing their enemies in 
valour, and their allies in moderation." But 
if fortune gave Eurybiades the nominal com- 
mand, genius forced Themistocles into the ac- 
tual pre-eminence. That extraordinary man 


i'-ook was, above all, adapted to bit time: and, suited 
in. r 

..... to its necessities, he commanded it- fates, i 

( 1 1 A r. 

vii. very fault in the callou? t the moral senti- 

ment, and his anscrupulout regard to 
diency, peculiarly aided bim in bis management 
of men. He could appeal to the nobles* pee- 

sions — he could wind bimselfinto tin- mo-t base. 

When- be could not exalt he OOfTUpted, where 

he could not |» mnadfl he intimidated, where hi 
could not intimidate he bribed.* 

When the intention to retreat became gene- 
rally circulated, the inhabitants of the northern 
coast of Eubcea (off which the Athenian navy 
rode) entreated Eurybiades at least to g 
them time to remove their slaves and children 
from the vengeance of the Barbarian. Unsuc- 
cessful with him, they next Bought Themi-- 
tocles. For the consideration of thirty talents, 

* Thus the command of the Athenian forces was at one 
time likely to fall upon Epicydes, a man whose superior elo- 
quence had gained an ascendancy with the people, which 
was neither due to his integrity nor to his military skill. The- 
mistocles is said to have bribed him to forego his pretensions. 
Themistocles could be as severe as crafty when occasion de- 
manded : he put to death an interpreter who accompanied 
the Persian envoys, probably to the congress at the Isthmus,' 
for debasing the language of free Greeks to express the de- 
mands of the Barbarian enemy. 

1 Plutarch implies that these envoys came to Athens, but 
Xerxes sent none to that city. 


the Athenian promised to remain at Artemi- book 

sium, and risk the event of battle. Possessed 

' CHAP. 

of this sum, he won over the sturdy Spartan vn. 

by the gift of five talents, and to Adimantus the 
Corinthian, the most obstinate in retreat, lie 
privately sent three.* The remainder he kept 
for his own uses ; — distinguished from his com- 
pters in this — that he obtained a much larger 
share of the gift than they; — that thev were bribed 
to be brave, and that he was rewarded for bribing 
them. The pure-minded statesman of the closet 
cannot but feel some disdain and some regret to 
find, blent together, the noblest actions and 
the paltriest motives. Bill whether in ancient 
times or in modern, the web of human kffaiM 
is woven from a mingled varn, and the indi- 
viduals who save nations arc not atony! those 
nasi acceptable to the moralist. The share 
of Theuiistoeles in this business is not. however, 
so much to his discredit as to that of the Spartan 
Eurybiades. We cannot but o b s arr i that no 
system contrary to human nature is strong 
against actual temptation. The Spartan law in- 
terdicted the desire of riches, and the Spartans 
themselves yielded far more easily to the lust of 

* Plutarch rejects this story, very circumstantially told 
by 1 lerodotus, without adducing a single satisfactory argu- 
ment for the rejection. The scepticism of Plutarch is more 
frivolous even than his credulity. 

I j(i \ i hiss : 

book avarice than the Luxurious Athenians. Thu 

native of Zelea, ;i citv in Asia Minor, bad sought 

CHAP - ■ i, , * • • , 

vii. to corrupt the reloponnesian cities i>\ rereian 

gold : it was not the Spartans, it iras the Athe- 
nians, who declared thi> man infamous, and 
placed nil life oat of the pale of the I 
law. With a noble pride Demosthenes sp 
of thii decree* "The gold," be says, M 
brought into Peloponnesns, not to Athens. But 
our ancestor! extended their cai od their 

own <it\ to the whole ot* Greece."* An .\n-- 
tiilo is formed by the respect paid to in 

which society tries in vain — a DemaratUS, BO 
EUirybiades, and, as we shall see, a Pausan 
by the laws which, afe c t m g to exclude the 
inHuence of the passions, render their temptations 
novel, and their effects irresistible. 

II. The Greeks continued at Enbcea ; and the 
Persians, eager to engage so inconsider; 
an enemy, despatched two hundred ch- 
vessels, with orders to make a circuitous route 
hevond Sciathos, and thus, unperceived, to at- 
tack the Grecian rear, while on a concerted 
signal the rest would advance upon the front. 

A deserter of Scios escaped, however, from 
Aphetae, and informed the Greeks of the Persian 
plan. Upon this it was resolved at midnight 

* Demost. Philip. 3. See also /Eschines contra Cte&iphon. 


to advance against that part of the fleet which 
had been sent around Euboa. Hut U twilight 
approached, they appear to haw changed or de- 
layed this design, and proceeded at once to- 
wards the main body of the fleet, lett perhapi 
with the intention of giving regular battle, than 
of attempting such detached skirmish* mid 

make experiment of their hardihood and skill. 

The Persians, amazed at the infatuation of their 

opponents, drew out their fleet in order, and 
succeeded in surrounding the Greek ships. The 
night, however, separated the hostile forces, but 

not until the Greeks had captured thirty of the 
Barbarian vessels : the first ship WSJ taken by 

an Athenian. The victory, however; despite 
this advantage, was undecided, when the I 
returned to Artemistum, the Persians to Aph< 

III. But during the night one of those sodden 
ami vehement storms not snirequent to the sum- 
mers of Greece, broke over tl The P 
•iansat Aphetsa heard, with a panic dismay, the 

continued thunder that boist above the summit 
of Mount Pelion ; and the bodies of the dead and 
the wrecks of ships, floating round the prows, en- 
tangled their oars amidst a tempestuousand heavy 
sea. But the destruction which the Persians at 
Aphetae anticipated to themselves, actually came 
upon that part of the Barbarian fleet which had 






BOOK nude the circuit round Kubu-a. Remote from 

land, eZDOted to all the I'urv ol* tin- temp 
WL norant of their course, ;iud amidst the darkness 
of night, they were dashed to piec 

fearful rock- termed M The Hollow-." and not a 

riegle fftllej escaped the general destruction. 
Thus the ileet of tin- Rarhtritm wtt rendered 

more equal to that of the << Reinforced 

by fifty -three ghips from Athens the next day, 
the Greet* proceeded at evenii net that 

part of tlie hostile navy pOSSCSflcd by the ('ili- 
cians. These they utterly defeated, and rettil 
joyfully to Arteini-iuiu. 

Hitherto these skirmishes, made on the sum- 
mer evenings, in order probably to take ad- 
vantage of the darkening night to break off be- 
fore any irremediable loss was sustained, seem 
rather to have been for the sake of practice in the 
war — chivalric sorties as it were — than actual 
and deliberate engagements. But the third day. 
the Persians, impatient of conquest, advanced to 
Artemisium. These sea encounters were made 
precisely on the same days as the conflicts at 
Thermopylae ; the object on each was the same — 
the gaining in one of the sea defile, in the other 
of the land entrance into Greece. The Euripus 
was the Thermopylae of the ocean. 

IV. The Greeks remained in their station, and 


there met the shock ; the battle was severe and book 

equal : the Persians fought with great valour 

and firmness, and although the loss upon their vii. ' 

side was far the greatest, many of the Greek 
vessels also perished. They separated u by 
mutual consent, neither force the victor. ( If tin- 
Persian fleet the ^Egyptians were tin* most dis- 
tinguished — of the Grecian the Athenians; and 
of the last none equalled in valour Clinias; — 
his ship was manned at his own expCMe. He 
was the father of that Alcibiades, afterward- 

While the Greeks mated at Artenii>iinn, 
counting the number of their slain, and amidst B.e.-tao. 
the wreckl of their vessels, they learnt the t. 
of Leonidas.* This determined their pre\ious 
consultations on the policy of retreat, and they 
abandoned the Euripus in iteady and marshal- 
led order, the Corinthians first, the Athenians 
closing the rear. Thus the Persians were left 
masters of the sea and land entrance into Greece. 

But even in retreat, the aetive spirit of The- 
mistocles was intent upon expedients. It was 
more than suspected that a considerable portion 

* I have said that it night be doubted whether the death 
of Leonidas was as serviceable to Greece as his lite might 
have been ; its immediate consequences were certainly dis- 
couraging. If his valour was an example, his defeat was a 

|(;<) atiiia 

BOOK of the lonians now in tht - 

lecretlv friendly to the < rre< ks. In tin: 

( 1 1 A 1 ' 

\n.' of tin- Athenian resseli Themietoclei tin 

repaired to a watering place on thi sad 

engraved upon the rock- these word-, which 
were read by tin- Ionian- tin- Deal dl 

" Mm of Ionia, in fighti Q8( \our an- 

cestors, ami assisting to enslave < I yon act 

unworthily. Come over to m : or it that maj 
not be, at least retire from tin- contest, and pre- 
vail on tin- Cariani to do the same. Ii 
neither sece s si o n nor revolt !><■ practicable, 
least when we CODM to action exert not your- 
selves against nsi Remember tliat we arc de- 
scended from one common race, and that it was 
on your behalf that we first incurred the enmity 
of the Persian." 

A subtler intention than that which was the 
more obvious, was couched beneath this exhor- 
tation. For if it failed to seduce tin- Ioni 
it might yet induce Xerxes to mistrust their 

When the Persians learnt that the Greeks had 
abandoned their station, their whole fleet took 
possession of the pass, possessed themselves of the 
neighbouring town of Histiaea, and over-running 
a part of the isle of Euboea, received the submis- 
sion of the inhabitants. 


Xerxes now had recourse to ■ somewhat book 
clumsy though a very commonly practised arti- 

Twenty thousand of his men had fallen at vn. 
Thermopylae: of these he buried nineteen thou- 
sand, and leaving the remainder uuinterred, he 
invited all who desired it, by public proclama- 
tion, to examine the scene of contest -\> a con- 
siderable number of helots had joined tin if 
Spartan lords, and perished with them, the 
bodies of the slain amounted to lour thousand,* 
while those of the Persians were only one thou- 
sand. This was a practical despotic bulletin. 

* There were 1 three hundred Sp tnd four bun- 

dred Thespians ; supposing that (as it has been averted) 
thf eighty u amors of Mvccna- ilea remained »*ith I 
onidas, and that one hundred, or a fourth of the Then 

it'll, ere their submission in ted, this mak< 

of eight hundred and eighty. If we take now what at l J la- 
taa was the actual ratio of the helots as compared with 
the Spartans, i. t; seven to one, we shall add two thousand 
one hundred helots, which make two thousand nine hundred 
and ninety; to which must he added such of the Cm 
as Cell in the attacks prior to the slaughter of Thermop) la- ; 
so that, in order to make out the total of the slain given h) 
Herodotus, more than eleven hundred must ! shed 

before the last action, in which Leonidas fell. 

1 Three hundred, for the sake of round numbers — but one 
of the three hundred- — perhaps two — survived the general 

.11. II 

[&2 AIIII.N 

hook V. Of all the neighbouring district, the Pho- 

ciam bad alone remained faithful t<> tin < i 
(ii \i' 
vii cian cause : their temtorj iraa now over-run 

tin* Persians, it the instance of their beredil 
enemies, tin- Thesauri sni, destroying <-it\ and 
temple, and committing ;ill the bor vio- 

lence and rapine •>> the waj krrived al Pano- 
bjsjsb, the I'ulk of the Barbarian arm) n 
through Boeotia, towards Athens, th 
jeet of revenge, while ■ * letachment ca- 

sein to 1 telphi, with ;i \ i.u of plundering the pro- 
digious riches accumulated in that celebrs 
temple, and of which, not perhapt uncharai 
istically, Xerxei was said to be better informed 
than of the treasures he had left behind in his 

own palace. 

But the wise and crafty priesthood of Delphi 
had been too long accustomed ifully to 

deceive mankind to lose hope or self-posse>- 
at the approach even of so formidable a foe. 
When the dismayed citizens of Delphi ran to 
the oracle, demanding advice and wishing to 
know what should be done with the sacred 
treasures, the priestess gravely replied, that 
" the god could take care of his own po- 
sions, and that the only business of the citi- 
zens was to provide for themselves ;'" — a priestly 
answer, importing that the god considered his 


possessions, am! not the flock, were the treasure, book 
The one was sure to be defended by a divinity, 

< MAP. 

the other might shift for themseh v 'i 

The citizens were not slow in adopting tin- 
advice; they immediately removed their wi 
and children into Achaia — while the males 
and adults fled — sonic fco Amphi- me 

amidst the craggy r ecesses of Parnassus, or into 

that vast and spacious cavern at the base of 

Mount Corycus, dedicated to the Muses, and 
imparting to those lovel) deities the poetical 
epithet of Corycides. Siatj men, with the chief 
priest, were alone left to protecl tl 

VI. Hut superstition can dispense with Bom- 
bers in it- agency. Just as the Barbarians w* 
in light of the temple, the sacred arms, hitherto 

preserved inviolahlc in the -anctnarv. w < re -c< n 

by the soothsayer to adrance to the front of the 

temple. Ami this prodigy but heralded Oth* 

more active. Ai the enemy now advanced in 
the stillness of the deserted eitj , and impi 
doubtless bv their own awe, for oot ti> a Persian 
army could there have seemed no veneration 
due to the Temple of the Sun!) just l»v the 
shrine of Minerva Pronsea, built out in front 
of the great temple, a loud peal of thunder burst 
suddenly above their head-, and two enormous 
fragments o[' rock, separated from the height- 

M 2 

104 \ 1 1 1 i n 

of that Parnassus amidst wl 

tall ai well Bfl Kodi lay hid.; rolled down the 
< HAP. 

vii. mountain-aide with a mighty crash, and de- 
stroyed many of the P< r.-ian multitude. At the 

ne time, from the temple of the warlil 
deea, broke forth ■ loud and martial shout, af if 
to arms. Confused appalled -panic-stricken, 
by theae ntpernatura] prodigiei » 1 1 « - Barbarianf 
turned to fly ; while the Delphians, alr< 
prepared and armed, rushed t 

mountain, and el. in the mid.-t of the 

inyadera, acattered them with great slaughter. 
Those who escaped fled to the army in Bcaotia. 
Thus the treasure! of Delphi wen; miraculously 
preserved, not only from the plunder of the 
Persian, but also from the clutch of the Delphian 
citixens themselves, who had b tally 

ansnous, in the fir>t i] to be permitted to 

deposit the treasnn - in a place- of safety. 
body knew better than the priests that treasures 
always diminish when transferred from one hand 
to another. 

VII. The Grecian fleet anchored at Salamis 
by the request of the Athenians, who were the 
more anxious immediately to deliberate on the 
state of affairs, as the Persian army was now 
approaching their borders, and they learnt that 
the selfish warriors of the Peloponnesus, accord- 




ing to their customary policy, instead of assist- hook 
ing the Athenians, and (n aerally, by CI1A1 , 

marching towards Boeotia, were engaged only 
in fortifying the Isthmus or providii their 

own safety. 

Unable to engage the confederate - I 
them in protecting Attica, the Athenians en- 
treated, at least, the rest of the maritime al 
to remain at Salami.-, while they themselves. 
hastened hack to Athens. 

Returned home, their situation was one which 
their generous valour had hut little merit 
Although they had sen! t<> Artemisium the prin- 
cipal defence of the common cause, now, when 
the Btorm rolled towardi themselves, none ap- 
peared on their behalf. The] were at ones in- 
censed and discouraged by the universal deser- 
tion.* How was it possible that alone and 
unaided they could withstand the Persian mul- 
titude ! Could they reasonably expect the 

fortunes of Marathon to he perpetually renewed ! 

To remain at Athena was destruction — to lea 
it seemed to them a species of impiety. Nor 

could they anticipate victory with a sanguine 
hope, in abandoning the monuments of their 
ancestors and the temples of their gods, f 
Themistocles alone was enabled to determine 

* Pint, in vit. Them. I Ibid. 

o'(i Mill 

book the condud of hie countrymen in this dilen 


Inexhaustible were the resources of . 
\n. winch ranged from the most lofty daring to the 
most intricate eraft. Pereeiriiig thai tin- only 
ehance of taiety was in die deeertion of the city, 

ami that the strongest obstacle to tin- ah 
eras in the Mi per tti tioni attachment to no 
so keenly fell by die ancients, he had recourse, in 

tin- failure of . to a counter-superstition. 

In the temple of the citadel v. rpent, dedi- 

cated to Minerva, and considered the tutelary 
defender of the place. The food appropri 

to the serpent vsa suddenly found unconsumed 
— the serpent itstlt ranished ; and. at the rag- 
gestion of Theniistocles, tlie priests proelaimed 
that the goddess had deserted the city and 
offered herself to conduct them to the i 
Then, amidst the general excitement, Themis- 
tocles reiterated his version of the Delphic 
oracle. Then were the ships reinterpreted to 
be the wooden walls, and Salamis once more 
proclaimed " the Divine. The fervour of the 
people was awakened— the persuasions of The- 
mistocles prevailed — even the women loudly 
declared their willingness to abandon Athens 
for the sake of the Athenians ; and it ami 
formally decreed that the city should be left to 
the guardianship of Minerva, and the citizens 



should save themselves, their women, children, BOOI 
and slaves, a* their own discretion mighj sug- rHAI> 
gest. Most of them took refuge in Trcezene, vii. 
where they were generously supported at the 
public expense— some at iEgina— others repaired 
to Salamis. 

A moving and pathetic spectacle was tliat of tin- 
embarkation of the Athenians for the Isle of Sala- 
mis. Separated from their children, their wm 

who were sent to remoter places of safety) — 
abandoning their homes and altars— the citadel 
,,[• Minerva— the monuments of Marathon,— they b.c. «o. 
set out for a acene of contest, perilous and pre- 
carious, and no longer on the ntfl of their 
beloved and father-land. Their grief WM 

heightened by the oeceasitj of leaving many 

behind, whose extreme age rendered them 

more venerable, while it incapa citate d their 

removal. Even the dumb animaU excited all 
the fond domesn ■ ■iations, running lo 

the strand, and expressing by their cries their 
regret for the hands that fed them : one of them, 
a dog, that belonged to \anthippu>, father of 
Pericles, is said to have followed the -hip-, and 
IWUm to Salamis, to die, spent with toil, upon 
the sands. 

\ III. The fleet now assembled at Salamis; the 
Spartans contributed only sixteen vessels, the 

JUS Mil. 

book people of /Egina thirty, - -swift galleys and 
well equipped ; 1 1 1 * t Athenian* one liundn 'I and 


vii. eighty ; the whole □ Herodo- 

ted of three hundred and seventy- 
'it ' ships, besides an inconsiderable num 
of vessels of fiftj i 

Burybiades >till retained the chief command. 
\ council of war was held. 'I Dumber 

of the more influential allies were composed of 
Peloponnesians, and, with 1 1 * * - counten 
the Spartan chief, it was proposed t<- fironi 

Salamis and fix the station in the Isthmus, aear 
the land forces of Pelopon 1 oil 

highly consonant to the interested policy of the 
Peloponnesian states, and especially to that of 

Sparta ; Attica was considered already lost, and 

the fate of that territory they were therefore in- 
disposed to c< While the del 
pending, a arrived from Athens with the 

intelligence that the Barbarian, having redu 
to ashes the allied cities of Thespue and Plata?a in 
Bceotia, had entered Attica ; and shortly after- 
wards they learnt that (despite a desperate r< ■- 
ance from the handful of Athenians who, some 
from poverty, some from a superstitious prejudice 
in favour of the wooden wall of the citadel, had 

* It is differently stated ; hv .Kschylus and NepcM at three 
hundred, by Thucydides at four hundred. 



long held out, though literally girt by fire i»><>k 

from the burning of their barricades,) the cita- 

del had been taken, plundered, and burnt, and vn. 
the remnant of its defenders put to the sword. 

IX. Consternation seized the council ; many 
of the leaders broke away hastily, went on 
board, hoisted their sails and prepared to fly. 
Those, who remained in the Council determined 
that an engagement at sea could only be risked 
near the Isthmus. With this resolve the Lead* 
at night returned to their slii; 

It is lingular how often, in the mo-t memo- 
rable events, the fate and the glory of nation- i- 
deeided by the soul of a single man. When 
Themistocles had retired to his ycMcl he I 
sought by Mnesipliilus, who i- -aid to ha 

ercised an early and deep influence over the 

mind of Themistoeles. and to have been 0U< 

those practical yet thoughtful statesmen ealled 
into existence by the sober philosophy of Solon,* 
whose lessons on the science of government 
made a ground-work for the rhetorical corrup- 
tions of the later sophists. On learning the de- 
termination of the council, Mnesiphilus forcibly 
represented its consequent If the alii, 

said he, " once abandon Salamis, you have lost 
for ever the occasion of fighting for your country. 
* Plut. ia vit. Them. 

I7<> \ i ii 

book Tin- Beel will certainly separate, the rarioui con- 

federate! return home, and Greece will i>« t i-h . 
( ■ ii > I* 
vii. Hasten, therefore, ere yet it be too late, and 

endeavour t<> persuade Burybiades to chang< his 

resolution Had remain." 

r riiis ailvicc, entirely agreeable t<> the \iewsof 
Themistod ited thai chief to nen eser- 

tions. Il<- repaired at once to Burybiades; end, 
by dint of that extraordinary ma the 

minds of others which be ]>•>--< •--<■<!. he finally 
won over the Spartan! and, late m the boui 
was, persuaded him to iv-assrinbh- the different 

X. In that nocturnal council debate grew 
loud snd warm. When Burybiades had ex- 
plained his change of opinion and his mot 
tor calling the chiefs together, Themistocles 
addressed the leaders at some length and with 
great excitement. It was so evidently the in- 
terest of the Corinthians to make the scene of 
defence in the vicinity of Corinth that we can- 
not be surprised to find the Corinthian leader, 
Adimantus, eager to interrupt the Athenian. 
" Themistocles," said he, M they who at the 
public games rise before their time are beat« 

" True," replied Themistocles, with admi- 
rable gentleness and temper; "but they who 
are left behind are never crowned." 


Pursuing the advantage which a skilful use boo* 
of interruption always gives to an orator, the 
Athenian turned to Eurybiades. Artfully sup- WtL 
pressing his secret motive in the fear of the 
dispersion of the allies, which he rightly judged 
would offend without convincing, he had re- 
course to more popular arguments. _ M Fight at 
the Isthmus," he said, " and you fight in the 
open sea, where, on account of our heavier 
leli and inferior number, you contend with 
every disadvantage. Grant even success, you 
will yet lose, by your retreat, Salamis, Megara, 
and yEgina. Vou would ; the Pelopon- 

nesus, but remember, that by attracting thither 

the war, you attract not only the naval hut altO 
the land forces of the enemy. Fight here, and 

we have the inestimable advantage of b narrow 

sea — we shall preserve Salamis, the refuge of 
our wives and children— we shall as effectually 

protect the Peloponnesus as by repairing to the 
Isthmus and drawing the Barbarian thither. 
W we obtain the victory, the enemy will neither 
advance to the Isthmus nor penetrate beyond 
Attica. Their retreat is sure." 

The orator was again interrupted by Adiman- 
tus with equal rudeness. And Themistocles, 
who well knew how to alternate force with 
moderation, and menace with persuasion, re- 

book torted with an equal asperity, but \% i t J i 
lar dignity and happiness of expression. 

CHAP. ' .. . ' . 

vii. " It becomes you, -aid Adimantus, scorn- 
rally, alluding to the capture of Athens, 
becomes you to be silent, and not to advise us 
to deseri our countrj »u, who no Ion 

have i country to defend ! biadei 

only be influenced by Themistoclea when The- 
mittoclei b more a city to represent." 

" Wretch ! " replied Themi nly, 

M we have indeed left our walls and houses — 
preferring freedom to those inanin 
Btons— but know, that the Athenians stiil possess 
a country and a city, greater and more formida- 
ble than yours, well provided with and 
men, which none of the Greeks will he able to 
-ist : — our ships arc our country and our city." 
" If," he added, once more addressing the 
Spartan chief, " ii' von continue here you will 
demand our eternal gratitude : — fly, and you are 
the destroyers of Greece. In this war the last and 
sole resource of the Athenians is their fleet : — re- 
ject my remonstrances, and I warn you that at 
once we will take our families on board, and -ail 
to that Siris, on the Italian shores, which of old 
is said to have belonged to us, and in which, if 
the oracle be trusted, we ought to found a city. 
Deprived of us, you will remember my words.'" 


XL The menace of Themistocles — the fear hook 
of so powerful a race, unhoused, exasperated, 
and in search of a new settlement — and the yet vn. 
more immediate dread of the desertion of the 
flower of the navy — finally prevailed. Eury- 
biadei announced his concurrence \n ith the 

views of Themistocles, and the confederal 
wearied with altercation, consented to risk the 
issue of events at Salamis. 

XII. Possessed of Athens, the Persian king 

held also his council of war. His fleet, sailing 
uj) the EuripuS, anchored in the Attic hay Of* 

Phalerum ; his army encamped along the plains 

around, or within the walls of, Athens. The 

s his armament had sustained were already 
repaired hv new reinforcements of Malians, 
Dorians, Locrjans, Bactrians, Carystians, An- 
drians, Tenedians, and the people of the various 
I>les. k ' The farther, " says Herodo the 

Persians penetrated Into Greece, the greater the 
numbers by which they were followed." It m 
be supposed, however, that the motley contribu- 

tions of an idle and predatory multitude, or of 
Greeks compelled not by affection hut h 
ill supplied to Xerxes the devoted thousands, 
many of them his own gallant Persians, who fell 
at Thermopylae or perished in the Eubcaan seas. 

XIII. Mardonius and the leaders generally 

174 vnum 

hook wtte ior immediate battle* The heroine Artemi- 

alone (rave a more prudent counsel. Sh< 

< 'i i \ i'. 
vii. preeented to them that if the) delayed a oa 

engagement oc sailed to the Peloponnesus/ the 
Greeks, failing of provisions end over-ruled by 
their tr;u ■-. would be certain to disp 
tire to their several homes, and, thus detached, 
tall an easy prey to nil arms. 

Although eontrurj to expectation, 

reeeiyed tine adverse opinion of the < larian prin- 
cess, with compliment! and praise, be \<t 
adopted the counsel of the majority; and, attri- 
buting the ill success at Artemisiom to bis 
sence, resolved in person to witness the triumph 

of ills arms at Salamis. 

The navy proceeded, in order, to thai island : 
the land forces on the same night advanced to 

the Peloponnesus: there, under CleombfOtOSJ 
brother to Leonidas, all the strength of the 

Peloponnesian confederates was already assem- 
bled. They had fortified the pass of 8c iron, 
another Thermopylae in its local character, and 
protected the Isthmus by a wall, at the erection 
of which the whole army worked night and 
day ; — no materials, sufficing for the object of 
defence, were disdained — wood, stones, bricks, 
and sand, — all were pressed into service. Here 

* Here we see additional reason for admiring the sagacity 
of Themistocles. 


encamped, they hoped nothing from Salami*, boom 
— they believed the last hope of Or. -red ( 

solely with themselves.* vn 

XIV. Again new agitation, fear, and dissen- 
sion, broke out in the Grecian navy. All those who 
were interested in the safety of the Peloponnesui 
complained anew of the resolution of Borybiai 
— urged the absurdity of remaining at Balamif 
to contend for a territory already conquered — 
and the leaders of £gina, llegam, and Allien-, 
were left in a minority in the council. 

Thus overpowered l>\ tlie IVlopoimesian alii. 

ThemiBtoclaa is said to have bethought himself 
of a stratagem, not inconaonanl with hi- schem- 
ing and wiU character. Retiring private]* from 
tlie debate, vol unconcluded, and sommoning 
the most confidential messenger in his servio 

he despatched him secretly to the eiiein\ - fli 
with this message — "Tlie Athenian leader, 
really attached to the king, and willing 
the Greeks subjugated to his power, -end- me 

privately to you. Consternation has seized the 

Grecian navy ; thej are preparing to Hv ; i 
not the opportunity of a splendid victory. Di- 
vided among themselves, the Greeks are unable 

* Her. lib. viii. c. 74. 

f The tutor of his children, Sieinnus, who had expe- 
rience of the Eastern manners, and spoke the Persian lan- 


I7'i ill \ 

book to resist you ; and you will see, as you ad van 

upon them, those who favour, and those who 
en \i\ * 
vii. would oppose you, in hostility with ber. H 

The Persian admiral was sufficiently 
deaced in the treachery and i 
of the Gr< i confide in tbo inaaaage thui 

delivered to him; but he |uired inch 

intelligence to confirm a resolution already 
formed. At midnight the Barbari 

r a large detachment to the small i-1 
Psyttaleta, bet B^Imhm and the continent, 

and occupying the whole narrow sea as bras the 
Attic port of Munychia, under cover of tin; 
darkness, disposed their ships, so as to surround 
the Cireeks and cut off the possibility of retreat. 
XV. Unconscious of the motions of the 
enemy, disputes still prevailed amongst the chiefs 
at Salamis, when Themistocles was summoned at 
night from the council, to which he had returned 
after dispatching his messenger to the Barbarian. 
The person who thus summoned him was Aria- 
tides. It was the third year of his exile— which 
sentence was evidently yet unrepealed — or not in 
that manner, at night, and as a thief, would the 
eminent and high-born Aristides have joined his 
countrymen. He came from iEgina in an open 
boat, under cover of the night passed through 
the midst of the Persian ships, and arrived at 



Salamis to inform the Greeks that they were hook 

already surrounded. ,, , 

J i HAP. 

" At any time," said Aristidt-. • it would V1 > 
become us to forget our private dissensions, aud 
at this time especially; — contending only who 
should most serve his country. In vain bou 
would the Peloponnesians advise retreat; we 
are encompassed, and retreat is impossible." 

Themistocles welcomed the new-comer with 
joy, and persuaded him to enter the eouueil and 
acquaint the leaders with what lie knew. His 

intelligence, received with doubt, was presently 
confirmed by a trireme of Tenians. which de- 
serted to them ; ami thev now lefioiisl] COO? 

templated the inevitable retort of battle. 

XVI. At dawn all was prepared. Assem 
bled on the strand, Themistocles harangued 

the troops ; and when he hail concluded, orders 

were given to embark. 

It was in the autumn of 480 u.c .. two thou- 
sand three hundred ami sixteen rears ago, that 

the battle of Salamis was fought. 

High on a throne of precious metals, placed 

on one of the eminence- of .Mount fisali 
sate, to survey the contest, the royal \<i >. 
The rising sun beheld the shores of the Eleusi- 
nian Gulf lined with his troops to intercept the 
fugitives, and with a miscellaneous and motley 


17N A'l hi . 

BOOK crowd of such as were rather spectators 1 1 1:111 

in. . 

sharers of the conflict. • 

en \r. 
vii. lint not as the Persian leaders had 

was the aspect of the foe ; nor did the I ! 

betray 1 1 1 < - confusion <»r the terror ascribed t<» 

them hy the emissary of Tliemistocles. As the 

daylight nude them manifest to the ivr-ian. 

they set uj> the loud and martial chorus of the 

* The number of tin gallics, at th« 

putation, was a thousand;' tliat of the Greeks, m 

i. three hundred ind eighty, llut tin re in- 

linitely more numerously manned, having 00 board ol 
rettel thirty men-at-.irin-. in addition to the usual nut 
of two hundred. Plutarch seems to state the whole numb* r 
in eecfa Athenian vc<m-I at fourteen heaw armed, and four 
how men. Hut this would make the whole Athenian force 
only three thousand two hundred and forty men. including 
the bowmen, who were probably not Athenian cit. 
It must therefore be supposed, with Mr. Thirlwall, that the 
eighteen men thus specified, were mi addition to the ordi- 
nary company. 

1 Nepos, Herodotus, and Isocrates, compute the total at 
about twelve hundred ; the estimate of one thousand is taken 
from a dubious and disputed passage in .Eschylus, which 
may be so construed as to signify one thousand, including 
two hundred and seven vessels, or besides two hundred and 
seven vessels ; viz. twelve hundred and seven in all, which 
is the precise number given by Herodotus. Ctesias says 
there were more than one thousand. 



Paean—-" the rocks of Salamis echoed hack the 


shout" — and to use the expression of ■ soldier ( )m , 
of that day,* " the tru mpet inflamed them with _^ 
its clangor." 

As soon as the Greeki began fed novo, the 
barbarian vessels advanced swiftly. Hut The- 
mistocles detained the ardour of tie- < 
until the time when a Bharp wind usually 

arose in that -ea. occasioning a heafy swell in 
the channel, which was peculiarly prejudicial 
to the unwieldy ships of the Persians; btft not 

so to the light, low, and compact fOSSCls of the 

Greeks. The manner of attack with the ancient 
navies was t<> bring the prow of tie which 

\\;i- fortified by long projecting heaks of hrass, 
to hear upon the sides of it- ai and 

this, tin' swell <>f the sea causing the Persian 
^allies to rear about unwieidily, the i i|»~ 

of the Greeki were well enabled to off 

By the time the expected wind arose, the en- 
gagement was begun. The Persian admiral t 
directed his manoeuvres chiefly against Tfaemis- 

* iEschylus. Perm .'>i>7. 
f The Persian admiral at Salamis 
to have been Onaphas, father-in-law to Xerxes. According 

to Herodotus, it was Ariabignes, the king's brother, who 
leeOM the NJM U Artabazanes, with whom he had disputed 
the throne. — Comp. Herod, lib. vii. e. -* and lib. viii. e. E 

N 9 

1*0 Aiiiivs: 

hook tocles, for on him, as the meal experienced and 


renowned of the Grecian leaders, th« 
cnkv. , . , . • . . 

vii. the enemy were turned. From In- ihip, 

wliich was unusually lofty. ;t^ from I castle, 4 

he sent forth darts ami SITOWS, until one of the 
Athenian triremes, commanded by Aminias, 
shot from the rest, and bore down npoil him 
with the prow. The >liij»- met, and Fastened 
together by their brazen beaks, which 
aigrappling irons, Arial.i. dlantlv hoarded 

the G reci an reasel, and was instantl} slain 

by the hostile pikes, and hurled into tl. 
The first who took a ship was an Athenian, 
named Lvcomedes. The Grecian- keeping to 
the straits, the Persians were unable to bi 
their whole armament to bear at once, and 
could only enter the narrow pass by detach- 
ments ;— the heaviness of the sea, and the cum- 
brous size of their tall vessels, frequently & 
sioned more embarrassment to themselves than 
the foe — driven and hustling the one against the 
other. The Athenians maintaining the right wing, 
were opposed by the Phoenicians ; the Spartans 
on the left by the Ionians. The first were gal- 
lantly supported by the /Eginetans, who, long 

* Plut in vit. Them. 

t Plut. in vit. Them. The Ariamenes of Plutarch is the 
Ariabiffnes of Herodotus. 


skilled in maritime warfare, eclipsed even their book 

... in. 

new rivals the Athenians. The Phoenician line 

was broken. The Greeks pursued their victory, Mi- 
still preserving the steadiest discipline, and the 
most perfect order. The sea breaine Strewn and 
covered with the wrecks of and the bodies 

of the dead ; while, to the left, the lonians ga 
way before that part of the allied force com- 
manded by the Spartans, some fighting with ureal 
valour, some favouring the Greek confederal' 

Meanwhile, as the Persians gave way, and the 
sea became more clear, Aristides, who had 
hitherto remained on shore, landed a bod} of 
Athenians on the isle of Psyttaleia, and put the 

Persian guard, there Stationed, to the sword. 

Xerxes from the mountain, his countless 
thousands from the shore, beheld afar and im- 
potent, the confusion, the slaughter, the de- 
feat of the forces 00 tb« see* Anxious now 
Only for retreat, the Barbarians retreated to 
Phalerum ; and there, intercepted by the ^Egi- 
netans, were pressed by them in the rear ; by 
the Athenians, led by Themistocles, in front. 
At this time the heroine Artemisia, pursued by 
that Aminias whose vessel had first grappled 
with the Persians, and who of all the Athenian 
captains was that day the most eminently distin- 
guished, found herself in the extremest danger. 

a ran 

book Against thai remarkable woman, the eflforti 

the Athenians had been especially directed : — 
chap. / 

\n deeming it ;i disgrace to them to have an enemy 

in a woman, they had wlemnly ward of 

it amount upon bar capture. Thus pursued, 

Artemisia had recourse to a Midden and exi 

ordinary srtifice. Falling in with a vo-c] of 

the Persians, commended by s < felyndian prince, 

with whom §be had ones been embroiled, she 

bore down a^ain-t the -hip and Bunk it — a truly 

feminine stratagem— deceiving at once a public 
ciit'inv. and gratifying a private hatred. The 
Athenian, seeing the vessel h<- had pursued thus 

attack a Barbarian, conceived lit; had mistaken 

a friendly vessel, probably a deserter from the 

Persians, for a foe, and immediately sought 

new objects of assault. Xerxes beheld and ad- 
mired the prowess of Artemisia, deeming, in 
the confusion, that it was a hostile she 

had sunken.* 

* Mr. Mitford, neglecting to observe this error of Xerxes, 
especially noted by Herodotus, merely observes — " Accord- 
ing to Herodotus, though in this instance we may have 
difficulty to give him entire credit, Xerxes, from the shore 
where he sat, saw, admired, and applauded the exploit." — 
From this passage one would suppose that Xerxes knew it 
was a friend who had been attacked, and then indeed we 
could not have credited the account ; but if he and those 
about him supposed it, as Herodotus states, a foe, what is 


XVII. ThebattlelastedtiUthetluskofevvninu;, BOOI 
when at length the remnant of the Barbarian hYet 
gained the port of Phalernn ; and the Greeks VI1 - 
beheld along the straits of Salami- no othai 
vestige of the enemy, than the wrecks and 
corpses which were the evidence of his del 

Will. When morning came, the Greeks await- 
ed a renewal of the engagement ; for the Persian 
fleet were still numerous, the Persian army 
covered the neighbouring shores, and by ■ feint 
to conceal his real purpose, Xerxes had ordered 
the Phoenician transports to be joined together, 
as if to connect Salami- to the continent. Hut 

a mandate Was already ISSUed for the instant 

departure of the navy for the Hellespont, and ■ 

few days afterward- tin- arm\ itself retiivd into 


The victory of Salami- was celebrated by 
solemn rejoicings, in which, principally remark- 
able for the beauty of his pefSOn, and his accom- 
plishments on the lyre and in the danee, was ■ 
youth named Sophocles, destined afterwards to 

share the glory of .E-ehvlns who, no leaf 
warrior than a poet, distinguished himself in 
the battle, and has bequeathed to us the most 

there incredible? This is one instance in ten thousand more 
important ones, of Mr. Mitt'ortl's habit of arguing upon one 
sentence, by omitting those that follow and precede it. 



BOOK detailed and animated account we po« it- 

,,',"',.. " v, ; nts - 

vii. Hie Grecian conquerors beheld the retreat <>t 
the enemj iritfa indignation; they irere on* 
willing that any of that armament which bad 
burned their hearth- and altar- should esc 
their revenge ; they panned the Persian ships 
.1- far as Andrea, where, do! reaching them. 
they ca-t anchor and held a consultation. The* 
mistocles i- said to have [sroposed, hut not sin- 
cerely, to -ail at once to the Hellespont, and 
destroy tin- bridge of boata. This council was 
over-ruled, and it was decided not to reduce so 
terrible an enemy to despair ; — " Rather," said 
one of the chiefs, (whether Aristides or Eurv- 
biades is differently related,) " build another 
bridge, that Xerxes may escape the sooner out of 

Themistocles affected to be converted to a 
policy which he desired only an excuse to el; 
and in pursuance of the hint already furnished 
him, is said to have sent secretly to Xerxes, in- 
forming him that it was the intention of the 
allies to sail to the Hellespont and destroy the 
bridge, so that if the king consulted his safety 
he would return immediately into Asia, while 
Themistocles would find pretexts to delay the 
pursuit of the confederates. 




This artifice appears natural to the icheming nook 
character of Themistocles, and, from concur- U1U , 
rent testimony,* it seems to me undoubted that 
Themistocles maintained a I C CW< OOrrespOn- 
dence with Xerxes, and even persuaded that 
monarch that he was disposed to favour him. 
Hut it is impossible to believe with Herodo- 
tus, that he had at that time any real desire 
to conciliate the Persian, foreseeing that be 
might hereafter need a refuge at the e aste rn 
court. Then in the zenith of his popularity, 

so acute 1 foresight if not in man. He WS* one 

of those to whom the spirit of intrigue ii delight 

in itself, and in the present instance it \ 
erted for the common cause of the Athenian-, 
which, with all his faults, he never neglected 
for, hut rather incorporated with, his own. 

XIX. Diverted from the notion of pursuing the 

Persian-, the Grecian allies, flushed with eon- 
quest, were yet eager for enterprise. The islei 
which had Leagued with the Made were <troneJ\ 
obnoxious to the confederates, and it was pro- 
posed to exact from them a fine, in defrayal of 
the expenses of the war. Siege was laid to 
Andros, and those islanders were the first who 
resisted the demand. Then was it that they 

* Diod. lib. xi. c. 5. 

Plut. in vit. Them. 

Herod, lib. viii. c. 110. Nepos, et 


hook made that memorable answer which maytei 

M I warning in all t inns to the Strong, wli-n 
\ ii. ' pressing on the desperate. 

M I bring frith me,*' Mid Themist two 

powerful divinities Persuasion and Fori 

11 And to wer ed the Andrians, " have 

two gods equally powerful on our tide - Poverty 
and Despair." 

The Andrian deities eventually triumphed, 
and the siege wee raited without effect. But 

from tlir Parians and < "ary-tiau-. and tOflM 

other islanders, Themistoelet obtained enormont 

sums of money unknown to his colleag 

whicli, however unjustly extorted, it docs not 
satisfactorily appear that he applied lar. 
to his own personal profit, but, as is more pro- 
bable, to the rebuilding of Athens. Perhaps he 
thought, nor without reason, that as the Athe- 
nians had been the principal sufferers in the 
war, and contributed the most largely to its 
resources, so whatever fines were levied on 
the seceders were due, not to the confedei 
generally, but the Athenians alone. The pre- 
vious conduct of the allies, with so much diffi- 
culty preserved from deserting Athens, merited 
no particular generosity, and excused perhaps 
the retaliation of a selfish policy. 

The payment of the fine did not, however, 


preserve Carystus from Attack. After watting aeoi 

its lands, the Greeks returned to Salamis, ami 

( HAP. 

divided the Persian spoils. The first-fruits vn. 
were dedicated to the Gods, and the choicest off 
the booty sent to Delphi. And lure \vt; may 
notice one anecdote of Theinistoclcs, which 
proves, that whatever, at times and in gr 
crises, was the grasping unscrupulousness of hi^ 
mind, he had at least no patty ami vulgar 
avarice. Seeing a number of bracelets and 
chains of gold upon the bodies of the dead, he 
passed them by, and, turning to one of hi- 
IViends, — " Take these for yourself,'' said he, 
" for you are not Theinistoclcs."* 

Meanness or avarice SFSS indeed no part of 
the character of Themistocles, although he has 

been accused of those vice- iruiltv. at 

times, of extortion. He VFM profuse, ostenta- 
tious, and magnificent above bis cosstesapotaH 
and beyond his means. His verv \ MX on 

a large and splendid scale ; and if he had some- 
thing of the pirate in his nature, he had nothing 
of the miser. When he had to choose between 
two suitors for his daughter, he preferred the 
worthy to the wealthy candidate — willing that 
she should rather marry a man without mom 
than money without a lnan.'f 

* Plut. in vit. Them. 

f Ibid. These anecdotes have the stamp of authenticity. 

188 ATI 1 1 M 

look \\. The booty divided, the allies rep 

|o the Isthmus, according to that beautiful ancient 


wi. custom of apportioning rewards: to men as had 
been in<»-i distinguished. It mm in the temple 
of Neptune that tin* leaden met. The right! of 

VOting was confined tO the Several chiefs, who 

were to declare whom they thought tlie tii>t in 
merit and whom the second. Kaeh leader 
wrote hi- own Dame ;i candidate far the i'n-t 

rank : hut a great majority ofsnffrages awarded 

the second to Themistocles. While, th 

eacfa leader had only a lingle suffrage in favour 
of tlie first rank, the second rank was unequi- 
vocally due to the Athenian. 

XXI. But even eonquest had not sufficed f<» 
remove the jealousies of tlie confederate leaders — 
they evaded the decision of a question which could 
not hut he propitious to the Athenians, and re- 
turned home without having determined the 
point which had assembled them at the Isthmus. 
But Themistocles was not of a temper to brook 
patiently this fraud upon his honours. Far from 
sharing the petty and miserable envies of their 
chiefs, the Greeks generally were loud in praise 
of his wisdom and services ; and, taking advan- 
tage of their enthusiasm, Themistocles repaired 
to Sparta, trusting to the generosity of the prin- 
cipal rival to compensate the injustice of many. 


His expectations were not ill-founded,— tin* CUS- book. 
toms of Sparta allowed no slight to a Spartan, ( ,, !Ap 
and they adjudged therefore the prize of valour Wi- 
fe! their own Eurybiades, while they awarded 
that of wisdom or science to Themi-t< •<•!•-. 
Each was equally honoured with a crown of 
olive. Forgetful of all their prejudices, t!i 
envy, and their inhospitable treatment of stran- 
gen, that nation of warrior- were dazzled by 
the hero whose courage assimilated to their 
own. They presented him with the stateli 

chariot to be found in Sparta, and solemnly 
conducted him homeward M far as Tegea, by 
an escort of three hundred ohoaen Spartan- 
called 'The Knights' — the sole example of the 

Spartans conducting any man from their eit\. 
It is said that on his return to Athens, Themis- 
toclei was reproached by Timodemuf of Aphidna, 
a Belbinite by origin,* and an implacable public 
enemy, with his visit to Sparta ; " The honours 

awarded you," said Timodemus, " are bestowed 

from respect, not to you, but to Atlu ■ 

* Herod, lib. viii. c. L25. 8ee Weiseling'a Comment on 

Timodemus — Plutarch tells the same anecdote, but makes 
the baffled rebuker of Themistoeles a citizen of Seriphus, 
an island in which, according to ^Elian, the frogs never 
croaked ; the men seem to have made up for the silence of 
the frogs ! 

book l\ friend," retorted the eritsi chief, •• the 


in; rids tliii li;til I been a Belbii 


\u. had not been t!m> distinguished a( Sparta, nor 
would you, although you had been born 
.\tlu-uian !" 

Whilfl the (ireeks were thus occupied, the 
Persian army had retreated with Mardoniui 
intO'Theetarjr. Here thai general selected and 
marshalled the forc e s , erith which he intended 
to renea the irar, retaining in hii the 

celebrated Immortal-. The total, inclnding tie- 
cavalry, Herodotm estimates at three hundred 
thousand men. 

Thus occupied, and eve Xerxes departed from 
Thessaly, the Spartans, impelled by an oracle, 
-cut a messcttger to Xesxei to demand atone- 
ment for the death of Leonid: 

"Ay," replied the* king, langhing, "this man 
(pointing to Mardonius) shall make yon fitting 

Leaving Mardonius in Thessaly, where he 
proposed to winter, Xerxes now hastened home. 
Sixty thousand Persians, under Artabazus, ac- 
companied the king only as far as the passage 
into Asia ; and it was with an inconsiderable 
force, which, pressed by famine, devastated the 
very herbage on their way, and which a pes- 
tilence and the dysentery diminished as it 


passed, that the Great King crossed the Hellee- hook 
poot, on which the bridge of boats had alreadv 
been broken by wind and storm. x\ more abun- \n. 
dant supply of provisions than they had ; 
perienced, tempted the army to lea, t<> 

which many fell victim-. The rest arrived at 
SardlS with Xerxes, whence lie afterward- re- 
turned to his more distant capital. 

XXII. The people of Potidssa, on the isthime 
of Pallene, and Olynthua, inhabited by the 
Bottieeans, a dubiooa and mongrel race, that 

boasted their Origin from those Athenians, who 
in the traditional ages had been -cut SS rri- 
butary captives to the Cretan Minos, no 
sooner Learnt the dispersion of the fleet at Sala- 
mi-, and the retreat of the king, than tin \ 

openly revolted from the Barbarian. Artabazus, 
returning from the Hellespont, laid siege to 

Olynthua, ma— acred the inhahitants, and colo- 
nized the town with ( nalcidians. lie then safe 
down before Potidssa ; hut a terrible inundation 
of the sea, with the sallies of the besieged, d 

stroyed tin- greater number of the unfortunate 

invaders. The remnant were conducted by 
Artabazus into Thessaly, to join the army of 
Mardonius. The Persian fleet, retreating from 
Salamis, after passing over the king and his 
forces from the Chersonese to Abydos, wintered 

192 \iiii.\s: 

bom at ('imia; and at the commencement <>t" the 

ipring Assembled at 8 
\n. Meanwhile the Athenians returned »<• their 
dismantled < ■ i t \ , and directed their attentioii to 
it- repair and leeouslruction, It iras then, 
that in all probability, tin- people bastened f by 
a formal and solemn reversal of ill- lenience of 
ostracism, to reward the sei >f Aristi 

ami t<> restore to the commonwealtb the most 
spotless «>t' it- citizens. 4 

* See Fast. Hell. vol. ii. |. 





DONIUI OCCUPIES ATHSNfl I n I u n im \\- Pi 




I. The dawning spring, and the formidable an- hook 
pearance of Mardonius, who with hii Persian 

1 CHAP. 

forces, diminished indeed, but still mighty, vin. 
lowered on their confines, aroused die Greeks 
t<» s sense of their danger. Their army was not 
as yet assembled, but their fleet, consisting of 

one hundred and ten ressels, under the com- 
mand of Leotychides, king of Sparta, and 

Xanthippus of Athens, lay off /Egina. Tims 

anchored, there came to the naval command* 

certain Chians, who, having been discovered in 
a plot against the life of Strattis, a tyrant im- 
posed upon Chios by the Persians, fled to 
£gina. They declared that all Ionia was ripe 


li)4 ATIII ' 

hook for revolt, Hud their representationi induced the 
Greeks to advance u hi ii the lacred Deloa. 

( MAr. 

v'ui. Beyond they dared not venture, ignorant ilike 

of tin- localities of the country and the t 

the elielllV. SaillOS -iM'Ilied to theln Mo 1. •-- 

mote than the pillan of Hercules, and mutual 
fear thus kept the •pace between the Pen 
ami the (iick fleet, free from the advanc 
either. But Mardoniui began slowly to 

from his winter lethargy. Influenced, thoi 
the Greeks, perhaps too fondly, by a Theban 
oraele, the Persian general despatched to Atli 
no less distinguished an ambassador than .\ 
ander, the king of Macedon. That prince, coos 
nected with the Persians by alliance, (for his si 
had married the Persian Bubares, son of Megaba- 
zus,) was considered an envoy calculated to con- 
ciliate the Athenians while he served their 
enemy. And it was now the object of Mardo- 
nins to reconcile the foe whom he had failed to 
conquer. Aware of the Athenian valour, Mar- 
donius trusted that if he could detach that state 
from the confederacy, and prevail on the Athe- 
nians to unite their arms to his own, the rest of 
Greece would become an easy conquest. By 
land he already deemed himself secure of for- 
tune, by sea what Grecian navy, if deprived of 
the flower of its forces, could resist him ? 

II. The king of Macedon arrived at Athens ; 


but conscious of the jealous and inxioni fear book 

which the news of an embassy from Persia would 

excite amongst the confederates, the Athenians mil 
delayed to grant him the demanded audience 
until they had time to send for and obtain depu- 
ties from Sparta to be present at tin* assembly. 

Alexander of Macedon then addressed the 

11 Men of Athens !" said he, " Mardonius in- 
forms you, through me, of this mandate IV 
the kino 1 : ' Whatever injuries,' saith lie, ' the 
Athenians have done me I forgive. Restore 
them their country— let them even annex to 
it any other territories they covet — permit 
them the free enjoyment of their laws. If the] 
will ally with me, rebuild the temple- 1 hi 
burnt.' " 

Alexander then proceeded to dilate on the 
Consequences off thlfl favourable mission, to re- 
present the power off the Persian, and urge the 
necessity of an alliance. — •' Let my offers prevail 
with you,"' he concluded, " for to you alone, of 
all the Greeks, the king extends his forgiven 
desiring your alliance 

When Alexander had concluded, the Spar- 
tan envoys thus spoke through their chief, ad- 
dressing, not the Macedonian, but the Athe- 
nians :—" We have been deputed by the Spar- 
tans to entreat you to adopt no measure- 



book prejudicial t<> G and to deceive no condi- 

. Im> dons from the Barbarians. This, most iniqui- 
v]n - tons in itself, would be, above* all, unworthy 
ami ungraceful in you ; — with \<>u rests the 
« > i - i «_z i 1 1 of the war now appertaining t<> all 
Qreece. Insufferable, indeed, if the Athe- 
nians, once the authors of liberty to many, 
were uon the author- of the sen itude of ( \n ■ 

ate your melancholy condition — 
your privations for two years of the fruits of 

your soil, your homes destroyed and your 
fortune- ruined. We, the Spartan-, and the 
other allies, will receive your women and 
all who may 1><: helpless in the war, while 
the war shall last. Let not the Macedonian, 
smoothing down the messages of Mardonrus, 
move you. This becomes him ; — tyrant himself, 
lie would assist in a tyrant's work. But you will 
not heed him it' you are wise; knowing that 
faith and truth are not in the Barbarians." 

III. The answer of the Athenians to both 
Spartan and Persian, the substance of which is, 
no doubt, faithfully preserved to us by Herodotus, 
may rank among the most imperishable records 
of that high-souled and generous people. 

" We are not ignorant," ran the answer, dic- 
tated, and probably uttered by Aristides,* " that 
the power of the Mede is many times greater 

* Plut. in vit. Arist. 

ITS RISE AND l All . 1!>7 

than our own. We required not that ostenta- book 

tious admonition. Yet, for the preservation 

of Liberty, we will resist that powef n wi can. nn. 
( lease to persuade us to contract alliance with 
the Barbarian. Hear back to Mardonius this 

answer from the Athenians— So long H \onder 
»un," and the orator pointed to the oil),* " hold- 
the courses which now it holds — so Long will 
abjure all amity with Xerxes — so long, confid- 
ing in the aid of our gods and heroes, wh< 
shrines and altars he hath burned, will ■ «• 

struggle against him in battle and for revenj 
And thou, beware how again thou bearest such 
proffers to the Athenians; nor, on the plea of 
benefit to US, urge US to dishonour; for w e would 
not ungrateful to thee, our gUCSt and our friend 
— have anv evil befal to thee from the anger of 
the Athenian-. 

■• For you, Spartan- ' it may he consonant with 
human nature that you ifaoold fear our allien 
with the Barbarians— yet shamefully you fear it, 
knowing with what spirit we are animated and 
act. Gold hath no amount — earth hath no ter- 
ritory, how beautiful soever— that can t e mpi the 
Athenians to accept conditions from the Mede 
for the servitude of Greece. Were we so in- 
clined, many and mighty are our prohibitions; 
lirst, and chiefly, our temples burnt and ov< 
* Pint, in \it. Arist. 

ATI! I \ 
BOOI thrown, ItTging u~ DOt U) alliancr bill to )'\«n. 

Next, the whole race of Greece baa one con 

( HAP. 

viii. guinity and one tongue, and common are its 
manners, it- altars, ;m<l its godi bate ind< ed, 
if Athenians were of these the ben -rly, 

learn mow, if yon kn<-w it not before, that, while 
one Athenian shall survive, Athens alii.- herself 
not with Xerxes. 

u Wc thank yon for your providence of ' 
your offers to protect our families— afflicted and 
impoverished as wn are. We will bear, hew- 
ever, our misfortunes as we may—becoming no 
burthen upon von. Be it your < sand 

your forces to the field. Lei then- be no delay. 
The Barbarian will be on us when be learn> that 
we have rejected his proposals. Before he pro- 
ceed to Attica let us meet him in Buotia." 

IV. On receiving this answer from the Athe- 
nians the Spartan ambassadors returned home ; 
and, shortly afterwards, Mardonius, by rapid 
marches, conducted his army towards Attica ; — 
fresh supplies of troops recruiting his fo 
wheresoever he passed. The Thessalian princes, 
far from repenting their alliance with Mardo- 
nius, animated his ardour. 

Arrived in Boeotia, the Thebans endeavoured 
to persuade the Persian general to encamp in 
that territory, and to hazard no battle, but rather 
to seek by bribes to the most powerful men in 


each city, to detach the confederates from the BOOK 

existent alliance. Pride, ambition, and tin* de- 

„ . , CHAP. 

sire or avenging Xerxes once more upon Athens, \ in. 

deterred Mardonius from yielding to thi* coun- 
iel. lie marched on to Attica— he found tin- 
territory utterly deserted. He ww informed that 
the inhabitants wen either at Salamif 01 with 
the fleet. He proceeded to Athens, equally de- 
serted, and ten months after the first capture by 
Xerxes, that city a second time was occupied In 
the Mede. 

From Athens Mardonius despatched a Greek 
messenger to Salami-, repeating the prop 

tionfl of Alexander. On hearing thoSC "!i 

in council, the Athenian- were animated by a 

species of fury. A councillor named Lycidas 
having expressed himself in favour of the terms, 

he was immediately -toned to death. The Athe- 
nian women, roused by a similar pa— ion with 
the men, inflicted the same fate upon hi- wife 
and children -one of thoi I of virtue 

which become crime-, but for which exigency 
makes no despicable excuse.* The ambassador 
returned uninjured. 

* The custom of lapidation was common to the earlier 

: it bad a kind of sanction, too, in particular offences ; 

ami DO crime could be considered by a brave and inflamed 

people equal to that of advice against their honour and their 


200 ATI I I.N 

hook V. The flight of the Athenian- to Salami- had 
not been a willing resort Thai gallant people 


\m. had remained in Attica so Long at the) <<>uM 
entertain any expectation of assistance from the 
Peloponnesus; nor was it until compelled by 
despair at the inertness <>f their allies, and the 
appearance <>t' the Persian! in Bceotia, thai thej 

had remOTed t<> Salami-. 

The singnlai and isolated policy of Sparta, 

which had curbed ami crippled, U) an exclusive 
regard for Spartan-, all the imn rOSJS 

and daring principle- of action, was never, per- 
haps, so odiously displayed ai in the present in- 
difference to an ally that had so nobly preferred 
the Grecian liberties to its own security. The 
whole of the Peloponnesus viewed with apathy 
the occupation of Attica, and the Spartans were 
employed in completing the fortifications of the 

The Athenians despatched messengers to 
Sparta, as did also Megara and Plataea. These 
ambassadors assumed a high and reproachful 
tone of remonstrance. 

They represented the conduct of the Athe- 
nians in rejecting the overtures of the Barba- 
rians — they upbraided the Spartans with perfidv 
for breaking the agreement to meet the enemy 
in Bceotia— they declared the resentment of the 
Athenians at the violation of this compact, de- 


manded immediate supplies, and indicated the hook 

rr in. 

Plains near Thria, a village in Attica, as a fitting . 

field of battle. ▼HI.' 

The ephors heard the remonstrance, but from 

day to day delayed an answer. The Spartan-. 
according to Herodotus, were engaged in cele- 
brating the solemnities in honour of Hyacinthus 

and Apollo; and this ceremonial might haw 
Sufficed as a plausible cause for procrastination, 

according to all the usages and formalities of 

Spartan manners. Hut, perhaps, there might 

be another and a grayer reason for the delayed 
determination of the ephors 

When the Isthmian fortifications were com* 

pleted, the superstition of the regent Cleom- 

brotUS, who had superintended their construc- 
tion, was alarmed by an eclipse, and he led haek 

to Sparta the detachment he had commanded in 

that quarter. He returned but to die ; ami bi- 
son Pausanias succeeded to the regency during 

the continued minority of Pleistarehus, the in- 
fant heir of Leonidas.* If the funeral solemnii 
on the death of a regent were similar to those 
bestowed upon a deceased king, we can ac- 
count at once for the delay of the ephors, since 
the ten days which passed without reply to the 
ambassadors exactly correspond in number with 

* Sec Herod, lib. ix. c. 10. Also .Mr. Clinton on the 
Kings of Sparta. Fast. Hell. vol. ii. p. 187. 

202 *im\ 

,,,()(,K the ten dayi dedicated to | >n 1>1 i<- mourning.* 
( . IIAI , Bnt whatever the cause of the Bp artaa delay — 
v '"j and the rigid closeness of that oligarchic govern- 
ment kept, in yet more important mattera, iti 
motives end ita policy n<> lea ■ secret to cootem- 
poraneooj nation-* than to modern inqniien — 
the delay itself highly hiceneed the Athenian] 
envoys: theyeree threatened to treat with Mar- 

donius, and abandon Sparta to her fete, and at 

length fixed 1 1 1 « - day of their departure. The 
ephon nmscd themselves. Among the depnl 
from the various states, there irai then in 
Sparta that Chileus, of Tegea, who had been 
scarcely less serviceable than Themistocles in 
managing the affairs of Greece in the Isthmian 
congress. This able and eminent Arcadian 
forcibly represented to the ephon the dai 
of forfeiting the Athenian alliance, and the in- 
sufficient resistance against the Persian that the 
fortifications of the Isthmus would afford. The 
ephors heard and immediately acted with the 
secrecy and the vigilance that belongs to oli- 
garchies. That very night they privately de- 
spatched a body of five thousand Spartans and 
thirty-five thousand Helots, (seven to each Spar- 
tan,) under the command of Pausanias. 

* See Herod, lib. vi. c. 58. After the burial of a Spar- 
tan king, ten days were devoted to mourning ; nor was any 
public business transacted in that interval. 


The next morning the ephors calmly replied B0 {} K 
to the angry threats of the Athenians, by pro- lllu , 
toting that their troops wen- already on the * '"• 
march, and by this time in Orcstcum, a town in 
Arcadia, about eighteen miles distant from 
Sparta. The astonished deputies * battened to 
overtake the Spartan force, and the ephors, M it 
fully to atone for their past procrastination. gSTO 
them the escort and additional reinforcement of 
live thousand heavy-armed Laconianso? PerioBci. 

VI. Mardonius soon learnt from the Arg 
(who, not content with refusing to join the 
Greek legion, had held secret communication- 
with the Persians,) of the departure of the 
Spartan troops. Hitherto, he had refrained 
from any outrage on the Athenian lands and 
city, in the hope that Athens might yet make 
peace with him. He now set tire to Athena, 

rased the principal part of what yet remained of 

the walls and temples. I and deeming the soil of 
Attica ill adapted to his cavalry, and. from the 
narrowness of its outlets, disadvantageous incs 

of retreat, after a brief incursion into Megara, 

* " According to Aristides' ck\ - Plutarch, " the 

Athenian envoyi were ArUtidet, Xanthippus, Myronides, and 

-[ Herodotus speaks of the devastation and ruin as com- 
plete. But how many ages did the monuments of l'i;-istratu> 
■arrive the ravage of the Persian sword! 



book be retired towardi Thebes, and pitched In- tenti 

in. ' 

Mm , on the l»;nik> of tie- \-<»|»u^. extending from 

vm - Brythra to Platen. Here hi- Ibm tu iwelled 
by such of the Qreeki a- irere friendly to hii 

VII. Meanwhile die Spartan* were joined el 
the Isthmus l»y the rest of tin- Ivloponneaiia 
allies. Solemn Bacrifieee irere ordained, and 
the angnries drawn from the victims being favor- 
able, the Ghreek army, proceeded onward; ami, 
joined at Bleasii by the Athenians, marched to 
the foot of Citlueron, ami encamped opposite the 
Persians, with the river of the Asopus between 
the armies. Aristides commanded the Athe- 
nians, at the head of eight thousand foot; and 
while the armies were thus situated, a dangerons 
conspiracy was detected and defeated by that 
able general. 

The disasters of the war — the devastation of 
lands, the burning of houses — had reduced the 
fortunes of many of the Athenian nobles. With 
their property diminished their influence. Po- 
verty, and discontent, and jealousy of new 
families rising into repute,* induced these men 
of fallen fortunes to conspire for the abolition of 
the popular government at Athens, and, failing 
that attempt, to betray the cause to the enemy. 
This project spread secretly through the camp, 

* Plut. in vit. Arist. 


and corrupted numbers ; the danger became BOOS 
imminent. On the one hand, the conspiracy 
Krai not to be neglected ; and on the Other, IB vni. 
such a crisis, it might be dangerous too narrowly 
to sift a design in which men of mark and sta- 
tion were concerned. Aristide- acted with ;< 
singular prudence. He arrested eight of the 
leader-. Of these he prostrated only two, who 

escaped during the proceedings,) and, diami 

ing the rest, appealed to the impending battle 
as the great tribunal which would acquit them 
of the charge and prove their loyalty to the 

VIII. Scarce \\a> this con-piracy quelled than 

the cavalry of the Persian! commenced their 

operation-. At the head of that skilful ami g 
lant horse, for which tin' Oriental nation- an 

mi renowned, rode their chief, .Ma-i-tiu-. clad 

in complete armour of gold, of bra--, and of 
iron, and noted for the strength of his person 
and tin 1 splendour of his trappings. Placed on 
the rugged declivities of Citlneron, tin' ( irerk- 

* This, Huong a thousand anecdotes, proves how salutary 
anil inevitable was the popular distrust of the aristocracy. 
When we read of the process ot bribing the principal nun, 
and of the conspiracy entered into by others, we must treat 
with contempt those accusations of the jealousy of the Grecian 
people towards their superiors which form the staple decla- 
mations of common-place historians. 

206 AMI iv 

i-.ook wcit tolerably safe from the Persian cavalry, - 
only the Megariant, who, to th<- number of three 

mm. thousand, wen: potted along the plain, and w< 
on all sidi s charged by thai agile and rapid ca- 
valr\ . Thm pressed, tin- -•■nt to Pan- 

snuius lor assistance. The Spartan beheld the air 
darkened with •hafti and arrows, and knew thai 
bii heavy-armed warrion were ill-adapted to act 
against horse. II*- in vain andeayoured to aronee 
those about him, by appeals to their honour all 
declined the succour of the M< —when 

Aiistides, canting the Athenian to eclipse the 

Spartan chivalry, undertook the defence. With 

three hundred infantry, mixed with archers, 

Olympiodorus, one of the ablest of the Athenian 
officers, advanced eagerly on the Barbarian* 

Masistius himself, at the head of hit troop, 
spurred his Nisaean charger against the Dew 
enemy. A sharp and obstinate conflict ensued ; 
when the horse of the Persian general, being 
wounded, threw its rider, who could not regain 
his feet from the weight of his armour. There, 
as he lay on the ground, with a swarm of foes 
around him, the close scales of his mail pro- 
tected him from their weapons, until at length 
a lance pierced the brain through an opening in 
his vizor. After an obstinate conflict for his 
corpse, the Persians were beaten back to the 
camp, where the death of one, second only to 


Mardonius in authority and nputc spread uni- hook 
renal lamentation and dismay. 
The body of Masistius, which, by its rati size nn. 

and beautiful proportions, excited the admira- 
tion of the victors, remained the pi the 
(ireeks; and, placed on a bier, it was home tri- 
umphantly through the ranks. 

IX. After this victory, Pausaikiaf conducted 
his forces along the base of Cithssron into the 
neighbourhood of Platssa, which he deemed i 
more convenient site for the disposition of his 
army and the BUpply of water. There, near the 
Fountain of Gargaphia of the of 

the Asopus, (which split- into man\ ii\ nl« 
bearing a common name,) and renowned in 10 
for the death of the fabulous ActSBOn, not far from 
the shrine of an old IMata'an hero, (Androcrat. 

the Greeks were marshalled in regular dh 

the different nations, some on a gentle acclivin, 
others along the plain. 

In tlu 1 allotment of tin- several stations a dis- 
pute arose bit ween the Athenian! and the Te- 
geans. The latter claimed, from ancient and 
traditionary prescription, the left wing, (the 
right being unanimously awarded to the Spar- 
tans,) and assumed, in the course of their ar- 

* Gargaphia is one mile anil a half from the town of Pla- 
taa. — Cells ltin. 111*. 

208 ATHENS: 

book "urn,. nt. fua inioleiil mperiorit] orei the Ul 

urn.. ,,,:m8 ' 
wii. " We come here to ti-^lit, answered the 

Athenians, (or Afistidef in their nam- Bad 

not to dispute, lint Bince th< I n» proclaim 

their ancient bi well bi their modern deeds, fit 

is it for us to maintain our precedent the 


Touching slightly on the ancient tun- - re fe r r ed 

t<» iiv tin- Tegeant, and quoting theii former 
deeds, the Athenian! insisted chiefly upon Ma- 
rathon ; " Yet," said their orators, or orator, 

in conclusion, " while we maintain our right to 
the disputed post, it becomes u> not, at tin- 
crisis, to altercate on the localities of the battle. 
Place us, O Spartans ! wherever seem- best to 
you. No matter what our station ; we will up- 
hold our honour and your cause. Command 
then — we obe 

Hearing this generous answer, the Spartan 
leaders were unanimous in favour of the Athe- 
nians ; and they accordingly occupied the left 

X. Thus were marshalled that confederate 
army, presenting the strongest force yet opp 
to the Persians, and comprising the whole might 
and manhood of the free Grecian states ; — to 

* Plut. in vit. Arist. 


the rinrlit, ton thousand Laeedsemonians, one booi 

. . in. 
halt', Bfl we have seen, composed of the PerioBCi, t 

the other moiety of the pure Spartan n. aofc \ in. 

warrior of the latter half were allotted seven armed 

Hi lots, to each of the heavy-armed IVriu ri ojm 

st t\ ing-man. Their whole force was, therefore, 

no less than fifty thousand men. N< t In* 

Spartans, (a kind of compromise of their claim,) 

were the one thousand five hundred OS ; 

beyond these five thousand Corinthians; and to 

them contiguous, three hundred Potidssans 

I'allene, whom the inundation of their sea- had 

saved from the Persian arm-. Next in order. 

Orchomenus ranged it- iii hundred Areadiai 
Sicyon sent three thousand, Epidaurus eight 

hundred, and Tne/ene one tlioii-aml, warri 
Neighbouring the last were two hundred 1 
preatse, and, by them, four hundred Ifyceneans 
and Tirvnthians.* Stationed by the Tirvn- 
thians, came, in Buccessive order, a thousand 
Phliasians, three hundred Hermionian-. 
hundred Eretrians and Styrean-. four hundred 
Chalcidians, five hundred Ambracians, eight 
hundred Leucadians and Anactorians, two hun- 
dred Paleans of Cephallenia, and five hundred 

* A strange fall from the ancient splendour of Mycenae, 
to furnish only four hundred men, conjointly with Tiryns, to 
the cause of Greece ! 

VOL. II. 1 

210 ATI 1 1 I 

BOOK only of the Islanders of .'Kgiiia. Three thou 


Band Metrarians and -i\ hundred IMatsessm 
chap. 6 

"v iii- were ranged contiguous to the Athenians, whose 

force of eight thousand men, under the com- 
mand of Aristides, closed the left v. ii 

Hum the total of the heavy-armed soldier} 
was thirty-eight thousand seven hundred, 
these were added the light-armed force of thirty 
five thousand Helots and thirty-four thousand 
live hundred attendants on the Laeonians and 
other Greeks; the whole amounting to one hun- 
dred and eight thousand tiro hundred men, 
side one thousand eight hundred Thespians, 
who, perhaps, on account of the destruction of 
their city by the Persian army, were without the 
heavy arms of their confederal 

Such was tlif force — not insufficient in num- 
ber, but stronger in heart, union, the memory of 
post victories, and the fear of future chains — 
that pitched the tent along the hank- of die 
rivulets which confound with the Asopus their 
waters and their names. 

XI. In the interim, Mardonius had marched 
from his former post, and lay encamped on that 
part of the Asopus nearest to Plataea. His brave 
Persians fronted the Lacedaemonians and Tegeans ; 
and, in successive order, ranged the Medes and 
Bactrians, the Indians and the Sacae, the Bceo- 



tians, Locrians, Malians, Thessalians, Macedo- book 


Diane, and tlie reluctant aid of ■ thousand Pho- 
cians. But many of the latter trihe about the viii. 
fastnesses of Parnassus, openly siding with tin- 
Greeks, harassed the Barbarian outskirts 

Herodotus calculates the hostile force at tin 
hundred and fifty thousand, fifty thousand of 
which were composed of Macedonian^ and 
Greeks. And, although the historian has omitted 
to deduct from this total, the loss sustained by 
Artabazus at Potideea, it is yet most probable 
that the Barbarian nearly trebled th« Grecian 
army; — odds less fearful than tin- Greek- had 
Already met and vanquished. 

Ml. The armies thus ranged, sacrifices W< 

offered up on both sides. It happened, bj 

Singular Coincident*, that tO ticket army was an 

Elean euglir. The appearance of tlie entrails 
forbade both Persian and ( ireek to cro» 1 1 1 ■ A 
pus, and ordained eaeh to act on the defensive. 

That the Persian chief should have obeyed the 
dictates of a Grecian soothsayer ia sufficiently 
probable ; partly because a superstitious people 
rarely despise the superstitions of another faith, 
principally because a considerable part of the 
invading army, and that perhaps the bravest 
and the most skilful, was composed of native 


'J 1 2 \ 1 1 1 



Greeks, whose prejudice! it wui politic to Ratter 

— perilous to affront. 

( 1 1 A I . 

wii. Eight days were consumed ia inactivity, r 1 * * - 

jinnies confronting each other without motion ; 
when Mardonins, in order to eul off the sea 
forces which everyday resorted to the Grecian 
camp, despatched ;t body of cavalry to seize the 

pSSI of < "ith;eron. Palling in with a eolivov of five 

hundred baatti of Inirthen, carrying provisions 
from the Peloponnesus, the Barbarians, with an 
inhumanity sufficient, perhaps, to prove that the 
detachment was not o oaipo s cd of Persians, pro- 
perly so speaking, a mild though gallant p 
pie — slaughtered both man and beast. The 
provisions were brought to the Persian camp. 

Mil. During the two following days, Mardo- 
nins advanced nearer to the Asopus, and his 
cavalry, (assisted by the Thebans, who were the 
right arm of the Barbarian army,) in repe 
skirmishes, greatly harassed the Greeks with 
much daring and little injury. 

At length, Mardonius, either wearied of this 
inactivity, or unable to repress the spirit of a 
superior army, not accustomed to receive the 
attack, resolved to reject all further compliance 
with the oracles of this Elean soothsayer, and, 
on the following morning, to give battle to 


the Greeks. Acting against one >uper»tition. ,<U,K 
be sagaciously, however, sought to enlist on his nm . 
behalf another ; and, from the decision of a mor- vm - 

tal, lie appealed to the ambiguous oracles <>f the 
Delphic god, which had ever one interpretation 
for the enterprise and another for the lOCD 

XIV. " The watches of the night Wi 
says Herodotus, in his animated and graphic 
strain — " the night itself was far advanced — an 
universal and utter stillness prevailed through- 
out the army, buried in repose — when Alexaml 
the Macedonian prince, rode secretlv irom the 
Persian camp, and, coming to the SUtBDSti oi 

the Athenians, whose line was immediatelj »»p- 

DOSed to his own, demanded an svdience of 
their commanders. Thii obtained, tin \ Io- 

nian thus addressed them : — • I am come to in- 
form \<>u of a secret you must impart to Panes- 

nia- alone. From remote antiquitv I am of 
Grecian lineage. 1 am solicitous of the 

of Greece. Long since, but for the au«j,uri 
would Mardonius have given battle. Regarding 
these no longer, he will attack irlv on the 

morning. Be prepared. If he change his pur- 
pose, remain as you are — he has provision* only 
lor a few days more. Should the event of war 

prove favourable, you will but deem it fitting to 

make some effort lor the independence of one 

214 \ I HISs 

BOOK who exposes himself to so < ;i peril for IIm 
purpose of apprising you of the intentions of the 
vim. foe. I ;mi Alexander of Macedon.' 

" Thus saying, tin- hor-enian returned to t J i » • 

Penuui osmp. 

M Tlic Atliciiiau leaders tiim- 

uias, and informed him of what they had betid. 91 

The Spartan docs not ap aecordiu 

the strong uipraeiious* of Herodotus, to have 
ceived tlie intelligence with the customary daunt- 
lessness of liis race. He feared tin Persians, 
he was una c qua inted with their mode of warl 
and he proposed to the Athenians to cha 
posts with the Lacedaemonians ; " For you," 
he, '" liave before contended with the Mede, and 
your experience of their warfare you learned at 
Marathon. We, on the other hand, have fought 
against the Boeotians and Thessalians, [opp 
to the left wing.] Let us then change our 

At first the Athenian officers were disph 
at the offer, not from terror, but from pride ; 
and it seemed to them as if they were shifted 
like Helots from post to post at the Spartan's 
pleasure. t But Aristides, whose power of per- 
suasion consisted chiefly in appeals, not to the 
baser but the loftier passions, and who in swav- 

* Her. lib. ix. c. 45. f Plutarch in vit. Arist. 


ing, exalted, his countrymen — repwisaplad t<> BOOK 

them that the right wing, which the Spartan t . JIU , 
proposed to surrender, was, in effect, the station vlil - 
of command. 

" And are you," he said, " not phased with 
the honour you obtain, nor sensible <>t' tin- ad- 
vantage of contending, not against the som 
Greece, hut the B ar b aria n invader?" 

These words animated those whom the Athe- 
nian addressed : they instantly ag reed to i 
change posts with the Spartans, and "to figb 

for the trophies of Marathon and Salami*."* 

XV. As, in the dead of night, the Athenian* 

marched to their new Nation, they «\!n»rt<il 
each other to valour, and to the recollection of 

former victories. But Mardonins, Learning from 

deserters the change of position, monad Us 

Persians opposite the Spartan-; and Pai 

again returning to the right, Mardonins pursued 
a similar maiueuvre. Thus the day fM con- 
sumed without an action. The troop- having 

* This account, by Herodotus, of the conn. 
the Spartan and the Athenian leader* which is amply sup- 
ported" elsewhere, i>, M 1 ha\e before hinted, a proof of 
the little effect upon Spartan emulation, produced by the 
martyrdom of Leonidas. Undoubtedly the Spartans « I 
more terrified by the slaughter of Therniopyhe than tired by 

the desire of revenge. 


\ i in 

book reap mod their former potto, Mardonim 

herald to the Spartans, chiding them for their 

viu. coif ardice, and proposing thai an allotted nam* 
bar <>f Persians should meet sn equal number <>i 
Spartans in little, and whoever conqu 
should be deemed victors over the whole adv< 

This challenge drew no reply from the Spar* 
tana* Ami Mardonius, construing the silence 
mto ;i proof of fear, already anticipated the ric- 
tory. Bis cavalry advancing upon the Gn 
distressed them, from amr and in - with 

their shafts and arrow-. The} i ill 

gaining the Gargaphian fountain, which tap 
ptied water to the Grecian army, and choked up 
the stream. Thus cut oft' from water, and, at 
the same time, yet more inconvenienced 1»\ the 

want of provisions, the convoy of which was' in- 
tercepted by the Persian cavalry, the Grecian 
chiefs determined to shift the ground, and oc- 
cupy a space, which being surrounded by 
rivulets, was termed the Island of Oeroe,* and 
afforded an ample supply of water. This island 
was about a mile from their present encamp- 
ment : thence they proposed to detach half their 

* " Here seem to be several islands, formed by a sluggish 
stream in a flat meadow. (Oeroe?) must have been of that 
description." — Gelfs Itin. 109. 


army to relieve a eonvoy of provisions enconi- book 

passed in the mountains. 

( ii \ i'. 

About four hours after sunset, the army com- \ in. 
nenced its march, but when Pausaniai gata the 
word to his Spartans, one officer, named Ainom- 
pharetus, obstinately refused to stir. He alleged 
the customs and oaths of Sparta, and declared 
he would not fly from the Barbarian for, nor 
connive at the dishonour of Sparta. 

XVI. Pausanias, though incensed at the ob- 
stinacy of the officer, was unwilling to have 
him and his troop t<> perish, and while the dis- 
pute was still unsettled, the Athenian-. lOtpi- 
cious of their ally, '* for they knew well it 
Bras the custom of Spartan- t<> BIS one thing 
and to think another,"* despatched a horseman 
to Pausanias to learn the cause of the delay. 

The messenger found the loldiers in their 
ranks ; the leaders in violent altercation. Pau- 
sunius W9M arguing with Amonipharetus, when 
the last, just as the Athenian approached, took 
up a huge stone with both hands, and throwing 
it at the feet of Pausanias, vehemently 
claimed, " With this calculus I give my suf- 
frage against Hying from the stranger." Pau- 
sanias, in great perplexity, bade the Athenian 
report the cause of the delay, and implore his 
He rod. lib. ix. c. o4. 

'JI.M miii.ns : 

B0O1 countrymen to halt a little, that they might 

in concert. 
CHAP. . . _ 

viu. At length, towards morning, Panaaniai re- 
solved, despite Amompbaretne, to commence 

liis march. All his forces proceeded along the 
iteep defilei at the baae of ( lithseron, from fa 
the I'cisian cavalry; — the more danntleai Athe- 
nian along the plain. Aiiioinphaivtii-. after 
impotent attempts to detain his men, WM 
luctantly compelled to follow. 

XVII. Mardonins, behokKiigthe vacant ground 
before him, no longer bristling with the Grecian 

ranks, loudly vented his disdain of the cowardice 
of the fugitives, and instantly led his impatient 
Batatof army over the Asopus in pursuit. As yet the 
September, Athenians, who had already passed the plain, 
were concealed by the hills ; and the Tegeans 
and Lacedaemonians were the sole object of 

As the troops of Mardonius advanced, the 
rest of the Persian armament, deeming the task 
was now not to fight but to pursue, raised their 
standards and poured forward tumultuously, 
without discipline or order. 

Pausanias, pressed by the Persian line, and 
if not of a timorous, at least of an irresolute, 
temper, lost no time in sending to the Athenians 
for succour. But when the latter were on their 

ITS RISE AM) 1 ALL. 2 1 9 

march with the required aid, they were sud- hook 
denly intercepted by the auxiliary Greskl in 
the Persian service, and cut off from the VUI - 

of the Spartans. 

The Spartans beheld themselves thus left un- 
supported, with considerable alarm. Yet their 
force, including the Tegeans and Helots, WSB 
fifty-three thousand men. Committing himself 
to the gods, Pausanias ordained a solemn sacri- 
fice, his whole army awaiting the result, while 
the shafts of the Persian bowmen poured on 
them near and fast. But the entrails presented 
discouraging omens, and the ncrifioe WSJ again 
renewed. Meanwhile the Spartans twin.- 
their characteristic fortitude and discipline — 
not one man stirring from his ranks until the 
auguries should assume a more favouring aspect ; 
all harassed, and some wounded, by the Persian 
arrows, they yet, seeking protection onlv be- 
neath their broad bueklers, waited with a stern 
patience the time of their leader and of Heaven. 
Then fell Callicrates, the ■tnftoKost and Itarongi 
soldier in the whole army, lamenting, not death, 
but that his sword was as yet undrawn against 
the invader. 

XVIII. And still sacrifice after sacrifice seemed 

to forbid the battle, when Pausanias. lifting his 

3, that streamed with tear-, to the temple of 

220 am i i.n 

hook J iino, that itood bard by, supplicated thi tats 
hirv goddess of Cithaeron, thai if the fates for- 

CHAP. J ^ 

nil. bade the Greeki to conquer, they might at least 
fall like warriors.* And while ottering 1 1 1 i ^ 
prayer, the tokens waited tor I)' uddenly 

risible in the victims, and the augurs announ 
tin* promise of coming rictory. 

Therewith, the order of Imttl. instantly 

throogh the army, and, to Bee tin- poetical com* 
parisoo of Plutarch, the Spartan phalani -ud- 
denly stood forth in its strength, like some ! 
animal — erecting its bristles and preparing 
vengeance for the foe. The ground, broken in 
many steep and precipitous ridges, and inter- 
sected by the Asopus, whose sluggish Btream') 
winds over a broad and rushy bed, was unfa- 
vourable to the movements of cavalry, and the 
Persian foot advanced therefore on the Greeks. 

Drawn up in their massive phalanx, the La- 
cedaemonians presented an almost impenetrable 
body — sweeping slowly on, compact and serried 
— while the hot and undisciplined valour of the 
Persians, more fortunate in the skirmish than 
the battle, broke itself in a thousand w 
upon that moving rock. Pouring on in small 
numbers at a time, they fell fast round the pro- 

* Plut. in vit. Arist. 

f Sir W. Gell. Itin. of Greece. 

ITS RISE AM) pall! 221 

gross of the Greeks— tlieir armour slight against book 
ike strong pikes of Sparta — tbeir courage witli- 
out skill — their Dumben without discipline: vm. 
still they fought gallantly, even when on the 
ground seizing the pikes with their Baked 
hands, and with the wonderful agility wliieh 
still characterises the Oriental swordsmen, sprii 
ing to their feet, and regaining their arms, 
when seemingly overcome, — wresting awav their 
enemies 1 shields, and grappling with them d< 
perately hand to hand. 

XIX. Foremost of a hand of a thousand 
chosen Persians, conspicuous by his whits 
charger, and still more by his daring valour, 
rode Mardonius, directing the attack— fiercer 
wherever his armour blazed. Inspired by his 
presence, the Persians fought worthily of their 

warlike lame, and, even in Calling, thinned the 
Spartan ranks. At length the rash but gallant 
leader of the Asiatic armies, received a mortal 
wound — his skull was crushed in by a Stone from 

the hand of a Spartan.* His chosen band, the 
boast of the army, fell righting round hiin, but 
his death was the general signal of defeat and 
flight. Encumbered by their loug robes, and 
pressed by the relentless conquerors, the Per- 
sians fled in disorder towards their camp, which 
* Herod, lib. ix. c. 62. 

\ niENS : 

booi waa o e cure d by wooden entrenchmenti ites 

and towers and walls. Hera, fortifying th< 

\m. selves as they beM Blight, they contended -ue- 

Mil fully, and with advantage, egaine! th< 

cedamonians, who wen- ill-skilled in a>-ault 

;ind siege. 

Meanwhile, the Athenian.- obtained the vic- 
tory on the plains over the Gieekf of Mardo- 
niiis - finding their most resolute enemy in 
the Thehans — (three hundred of whose principal 
— f fl Ofl fell in the field ) and now joined the 
Spartan- at |fae l'< •r-ian eanij). The .\th.nian- 
are said to have bet n better skilled in the art of 
siege than the Spartans ; yet at that time their 
experience could scarcely have been greater. 
The Athenians were at all times, however, of a 
more impetuous temper ; and the men who had 
' run to the charge' at Marathon, were not 
to be baffled by the desperate remnant of their 
ancient foe. They scaled the walls — they 
a breach through which the Tegeans were the 
first to rush — the Greeks poured fast and fierce 
into the camp. Appalled, dismayed, stupified, 
by the suddenness and greatness of their loss, 
the Persians no longer sustained their fame — 
they dispersed themselves in all directions, fall- 
ing, as they fled, with a prodigious slaughter, 
so that out of that mighty armament scarce three 


thousand effected an escape. We must except, BOOI 

however, the wary and distrustful Artabazus, 

. (ii \i* 
who, on the first tokens of defeat, had fled with \ui. 

tlit: forty thousand Parthians and Chora-mian- In- 

commanded, towards Phocis, in the intention to 

gain the Hellespont. The Mantim an- mind 

after the capture of the camp, too late for then 

share of glory ; they endeavoured to atone the 

loss by the pursuit of Artabazus, which \\a- 

however ineffectual. The Eleans arrived a* 

tin Mantineans. The leaders of both these peopkf 

were afterwards banished. 

XX. An JEginetan proposed t<> Psusinias 

to intliet on the corpse of .Mardoiiiu- tin- -aiue 

insult which Xerxes had put upon the bodi <>t 


The Spartan indignantly refused. M Aii 
elevating mv country to fame," -aid he, u would 

you have me depress it to infamy by vengeance 

on the I tody of the dead ( Leonidas and Ther- 
mopylae are sufficiently avenged by this mighty 
overthrow of the living. 4 

The body of that brave and ill-fated general, 
the main author of the war. W8X removed the 
next day— by whose piety and to what sepulchre 
is unknown. The tomb of his doubtful fame i- 
alone eternally visible along the plains of Plataea, 

-'-I ATlll.v 

book and above the grej front <>i the imperishable 
( lithssron ! 

vin " XXI. The victory won, the conquerora were 
dazzled by the gorgeous plunder which remained 
— tents and conchei decorated with precioui 
metals — cups and resseli and lacki of gold — and 
the dead, themaelvei ;i booty, from the costl) 
<>rii;iiii«'iits of their chains and br and 

efmiten vainly iplendid honef and cameli and 
Persian women, and all the trappings and =»|*|*li — 
anices by which despotism made a luxury of war 
Pausanias forbade the i>ooty to be touched, 4 
and directed the Helots to coll* <r the treasure in 
one spot. But those dexterous -1 a- t< <l 

many articles of value, by the purchase of which 
several of the iEginetans, whose avarice was 
sharpened by a life of commerce, enriched them- 
selves — obtaining gold at the price of bra--. 

Piety dedicated to the gods a tenth part of 
the booty— from which was presented to the 
shrine of Delphi a golden tripod, resting on a 
three-headed snake of brass ; to the Corinthian 
Neptune a brazen statue of the deity, seven 
cubits high ; and to the Jupiter of Olympia a 

* The Tegeans had already seized the tent of Mardonius, 
possessing themselves especially of a curious brazen manger, 
from which the Persian's horse was fed, and afterwards de- 
dicated to the Alean Minerva. 


statue of ten cubits. Pausanias obtained also fl hook 

tenth of the produce in each article of plunder — 
horses and camels, women and gold— a prize JUL 
which ruined in rewarding him. The regfl un- 
divided amongst the soldiers, according to their 

So much however was left unappropriated, in 
the carelessness of satiety, that, in after times, 
the battle-field still afforded to the search of the 
Plataeans chests of silver and gold, and other 

XXII. Taking possession of the tent of Mardo- 
nius, which had formerly been that of Xer\ 
PausaniaS directed the oriental slaves, who had 
escaped the massacre, to prepare a banquet after 
the fashion of the Persians, and as if served to 
Mardonius. Beside this g o rge o us fca-t, tin- 
Spartan ordered his wonted repast to be pre- 
pared ; and then, turning to the different clii- 
exclaimed — " See the folly of the Persian, who 
forsook such splendour to plunder such po- 

The story has in it something of the sublime. 
But the austere Spartan was soon corrupted by 
the very luxuries he affected to disdain. It is 
often that we despise to-day what we find it 
difficult to resist to-morrow . 

XXIII. The task of reward to the living coni- 
vol. ii. q 

226 atiii \ 

book pleted, tin* Greekf proceeded to that of honour 
to the dead. In three trenches the Lacedaemo- 


toil iiiaus were interred; one contained those who 
belonged to | elasi in Sparta, culled the Knights,* 
of whom two hundred had conducted Thei 
tocles to Tegea, amongst tin the stubborn 

Amompharetui ;) the leeond the other Spar- 
tans; the third the Helots. The Athenii 
Tegeans, Megarian<, Phli b, had their 

•ingle and separate places of sepulture, and. i 
all, barrows of earth were raised. Subsequently, 
trihes and states, that had shared indeed the 
final battle, or the previous skirmishes, but with- 
out the glory of a loss of life, erected cenotaphf 
to imaginary dead in that illustrious burial-field. 
Amongst those spurious monument- was one 
dedicated to the iEginetans. Aristodemus, the 
Spartan who had returned safe from Thermo- 
pylae, fell at Plataea, the most daring of tin- 
Greeks on that day, voluntarily redeemii. 
dishonoured life by a glorious death. But to 
his manes alone, of the Spartan dead, no honours 
were decreed. 

* I adopt the reading of Valcknaer, ' Tovq iVa-eac.' The 
Spartan knights, in number three hundred, had nothing 
to do with the cavalry, but fought on foot or on horseback, 
as required. (Dionys. Hal. xi. 13.) They formed the royal 


XXIV. Plutarch relate* that a dangerous <li>- hook 


pute ensued between the Spartans and Athe- 
nians, as to their relative claim to tin* Ari-teia. HIL 
or first military honours ; the question was de- 
cided by awarding them to the Plataeans— -a 
state of which none were jealous ; from a similar 
motive ordinary men are usually found possessed 
of the honours due to the greatest. 

More important than the Aristeia, had tlmir 
spirit been properly maintained, were certain 

privileges then conferred on Platsea. Thitl* 
in a subsequent assembly of the allies, it was 
proposed by Aristides, that deputies from the 

States of Greece should he annually -.-in to fina- 
nce to Jupiter the Deliverer, ami confer upon 
the general polities of Greece. There, e\ 
fifth year, should be celebrated games in honour 

of Liberty: while the IMataans themselves, ex- 
empted from military service, -houhl be deemed, 

so long M they fulfilled the task tint- imp< - 
upon them, a >aeivd and inviolable peej) 

Thus Platssa nominally became a second Elis 

its battle-field another AltlS. Aristides, at the 

same time, sought to enforce the large ami 
thoughtful policy commenced by Themif 
He endeavoured to draw the jealous states of 
Greece into a common and perpetual league, 
maintained against all invaders by a standing 

Q 2 


iooi force of one thousand cavalrv, "He hundred 

ships, and ten thouMuid heavy-armed infantry. 
viu. XXV. An earnest ;m<l deliberate eonncil 

was now field | in which it area n solved to direct 
tlie victorious army a^ain-t Thebet, and demand 
the persons of those who hail Bided with the 

Mede. Fierce m had been the hostility of* that 
state to the Hellenic liberties, it- Bin was thi 
the Oligarchy rather than the People. The moal 
eminent of these traitor- to Greece were Tim** 
genidas and Attaginos, and the allies reaol 
to destroy the city, unless those chiefs 
given 1 1 1 > to joatioi 

On the eleventh day from the battle tie 
down before Thebes, and on the refusal of the in- 
habitants to surrender the chiefs so justly ob- 
noxious, laid waste the Theban land-. 

Whatever we may think of the conduct of 
Timagenidas, in espousing the cause of the in- 
vaders of Greece, we must give him the praise 
of a disinterested gallantry which will remind 
the reader of the siege of Calais by Edward III., 
and the generosity of Eustace de St. Pierre. 
He voluntarily proposed to surrender himself to 
the besiegers. 

The offer was accepted : Timagenidas and se- 
veral others were delivered to Pausanias, removed 
to Corinth, and there executed — a stern but sain- 



fury example. Attaginus saved himself by hook 
flight. His children, given op to Pausanias, 
were immediately dismissed. " Infants," said viil 
the Spartan, "could not possibly have conspired 
igainst us with the Mede." 

While Thebes preserved herself from destruc- 
tion, Artabazus succeeded in effecting his 
turn to Asia, his troop, greatly reduced bj the 
attacks of the Thraeians ami the excesses of 
famine and fatigue. 

XXVI. On the same day as that on which 
the battle of Plataea crashed the land force- of 
Persia, a no less important victory was gained 
over their Beef at BiycaJe in Ionia. 

It will be remembered that Leotychides, the 

Spartan kino-, and the Athenian Xaothippos, 
had conducted the Grecian navy t<» I)<! 
There anchored, they received a deputation from 
Samoa, amongst whom was Elegesistratiis, the son 
of Aristagoras. These ambassadors declared 

that all the lonians waited only the moment to 
revolt from the Persian yoke, and that the signal 
would be found in the first active measures of 
the Grecian confederates. Leotychides, induced 
by these representations, received the Samians 
into the general league, and set sail to Samos. 
There, drawn up in line of battle, near the tem- 
ple of Juno, they prepared to hazard an engage- 


A 1 III 

book Hut the Persian*, on their approach 

treated to the cunt incut, in order to itrengthen 
< HAP 

vm themselves with their land force-, winch, to the 

amount of -i\tv thousand, under the command 

of the Persian Tigranee, Xerxe* had stationed 

;it Mvcale fof the protection of Ionia. 

Arrived at RfyoaK! they drew their -hip- to 

land, fortifying them with itTOng etitrenchmeiif- 

and barricades, ami then languineiy awaited the 


The (ireck-, after a -hort consultation. 

-olved u])on pursuit Approaching the enei 
station, they heheld the iea deserted, the ship* 
secured by entrenchment-, and long ranks of in- 
fantry ranged along the shore;. Leotychides, by 
a herald, exhorted the Ionians in the Persian 
service to remember their common liberties, and 
that on the day of battle their watchword would 
be " Hebe." 

The Persians, distrusting these messages, 
though uttered in a tongue they understood not. 
and suspecting the Samians, took their arms 
from the latter ; and, desirous of removing the 
Milesians to a distance, entrusted them with the 
guard of the paths to the heights of Mycale. 
Using these precautions against the desertion of 
their allies, the Persians prepared for battle. 

The Greeks were anxious and fearful not -o 


much for themselves us for their countrymen in BOOK 

Bceotia, opposed to the mighty force of Mardo- 

11 & • (MAP. 

nius. 13 1 it a report spreading' through the camp vin. 
that a complete victory had bean obtained in 
that territory, (an artifice, most probably, of 
Leotychides,) animated their courage and height- 
ened their hopes. 

The Athenians, who, with the troop- of< <>rinth, 
Sicyon, and Troezene, formed half the army, 
advanced by the coast and along the plain — 
the Lacedaemonians by the more steep and Bat. 
wooded courses ; and while the latter were yet s^pLnbir, 
on their march, the Athenians wnv already 

engaged at the entrenchments. 

Inspired not more by enmity than emulation, 
the Athenians urged e;ieh other to dfiSpefatC 

teats — that they, and not the Spartans, might 

have the honours of the day. They poured 

fiercely on— after an obstinate and equal con- 
flict, drove back the foe to tin- barricade- that 
girt their ships, stormed the entrenchment-, 
carried the wall, and rushing in with their all i 
put the Barbarians to disorderly and rapid flight. 
The proper Persians, though but few in number, 
alone stood their ground — and even when Ti- 
granes himself was slain, resolutely fought on 
until the Lacedaemonians entiled the entrench- 
ment, and all who had survived the Athenian, 
perished by the Spartan, sword. 

232 Ai ii 


The disarmed Samiana, as soon as 1 1 ■ * - tor* 
limes of the battle became apparent, gave all tin 
will assistance they could render to the Greeks; the 
other [ouians leixed the same opportunity to 

volt ami turn their arms against their allies. 
In the mountain defiles the Milesians intercepted 
their own Fugitive allies, consigning them to t 1m- 
Grecian sword, and active beyond the rest in 
their slaughter. So relentless and ><> faithless 
are men, compelled to servitude, when the 

-ion summons then to !»«• G 

XXVI I. Tlii- battle, in which the Athenian! 
were pre-eminently distinguished, was followed 
iij) by the conflagration of the Persian ships and 
the collection of the plunder. The Greeks then 
retired to Samoa. Here deliberating, it was pro- 
posed by the Peloponnesian leaders that Ionia 
should henceforth, as too dangerous and remote 
to guard, he abandoned to the Barbarian, and 
that, in recompence, the Ionians should be put 
into possession of the maritime coasts of those 
Grecian states which had sided with the Mede. 
The Athenians resisted so extreme a proposition, 
and denied the power of the Peloponnesians to 
dispose of Athenian colonies. The point was 
surrendered by the Peloponnesians ; the Ionians 
of the continent were left to make their own 
terms with the Barbarian, but the inhabitants of 


the Isles which had assisted against the Mode, SOOK 

. 111. 

were received into the general confederacy, 

hound hy a solemn pledge never to desert it. VHI. 

The fleet then sailed to the Hellespont, with 

the design to destroy the bridge, which they 
believed still existent. Finding it, howtn 
already broken, Leotychides and the Pelo- 
ponnesians returned to Greece. The Athe- 
nians resolved to attempt the recovery of the 
colony of Miltiades in the Chersonese. The 
Persians collected their whole remaining foi 
at Sestos, the strongest hold in that peninsula **•§••£ 

° * S*»to«, be- 

— the Athenians laid siege to it, and, after en*!" 1 " l ,1 "' 

° auiumii, 

during a famine bo obstinate that the cords 

- , t ° ' concluded 

or rather straps, oi* their bedding were consumed "•«»•• 
for food, the Persians evacuated the town, which b.c. 47«. 
i he inhabitants then cheerfully surrendered* 

Thus concluding their victories, the Atli 
nians returned to Greece, c ar r yin g with them a 
vast treasure, and, not the least precious rel: 
the fragments and cables of the Hellespontic 
bridge, to be suspended in their temples, 

XXVIII. Lingering at Sardis, Xerxes beheld 
the scanty and exhausted remnants of his mighty 
force, the fugitives of the fatal days of Mycale 
and Plahea. The army over which he had 
wept in the zenith of his power, had fulfilled the 
prediction of his tears : and the armed might 


. n \i 

\ I II: 

book of Media and Egypt, ofLydia and Assyi 


in) more ! 

VMI So concluded tin- tiivat Persian Invasion-— 
that war the most memorable in tin- hi-tory of 
mankind, whether from tin- \ ; i — T 1 1 . — , or iron i the 

failure, of it- designs. We now emerge from the 
poetry that bdongi to carl' .-. through 

the mists of which tin- forma of men assume 
proportions as ^ijrantic a- indistinct The <n- 
chanting Herodotna abandoni at, and ire do not 

yet permanently acquire, in the stead of hi- 
romantic and wild fidelity, the elaborate and 
sombre statesmanship of tin calm Thucydides. 
Henceforth we see more of the Beautiful and 
the Wise, less of the Wonderful and Vast. 
What the Heroic Age is to Tradition, the Persian 
Invasion is to History. 




TO THE DEATH OF CIMON— B.C 479— B.C. 449. 



new BAEBOTOOf MB niii.t > - i-k<>I'<»mi i<>\ of nil. WAR 
i i\s in mi: AMTHIOTTONIC WH m n. DEI IA1 ID it THEMIS 
tocles Ai.Llii) i mi i ITCTPRUI \ni» BTSARTIUM— PAUSA 


RIM— THE ATHENIAN! RIM TO i hi. head of the h»nian 



I. It is to the imperishable honour of the French book 
Philosophers of the last century, that, above all 
the earlier teachers of mankind, they advocated '• 

those profound and permanent interests of the 

238 atiii .\ 

MMM human race, which are ineeparabl) connected 
with a love of Peace ; thai the\ Btripped the 

i. image of War of the (1 hichittook, 

in the primitive ages of soci*-?\ . from tin- passions 
of savages, and the enthusiasm af poata, and 
turned our contemplation from the fame of th<- 
individual berO, to tin- wrongs of the butchi 
millions. But their teal for that j 1 1 HAN IT*:, 
which thoae free and hold thinkii 

to make die vital principle of a philosophical 

school, led them into partial ami hsi-t\ \; 
indiscriminately embraced l»y their disciples ; — 
and in condemning the evils, they forgot the ad- 
vantages, of War. The misfortunes of < -ra- 
tion are often necessary to the prosperity of ano- 
ther. The stream of blood fertilizes the eartli over 
which it flows, and war has been at once the 
scourge and the civilizer of the world : some- 
times it enlightens the invader, sometimes the 
invaded ; and forces into sudden and brilliant 
action the arts and the virtues that are stimu- 
lated by the invention of Necessity, — matured by 
the energy of Distress. What adversity is to 
individuals, war often is to nations : — Uncertain 
in its consequences, it is true that with some it 
subdues and crushes, but with others it braces 
and exalts. Nor are the greater and more illus- 
trious elements of character in men, or in states, 


ever called prominently forth, without some* hook 
thing of that bitter and sharp experience which ' 

hardens the more robust properties of the mind, i. 
which refines the more subtle and sagacion-. 
Even when these — the armed revolutions of tin- 
world — are most terrible in their reeulti 
stroying the greatness, and the liberties of one 
people — they serve sooner or later to produce a 
counteracting rise and progress in the fortunes 
of another ; as the sea here advances, there re- 
cedes, swallowing up the fertilities ot ' thi> shore, 
to increase the territories of that ; and fulfilling, 
in its awful and tppallillg agency, that main! 

of human destinies, winch ordains all things to 
be changed, and nothing t<> 1 »* - destroyed, With- 
out the invasion of Persia, <• might have 

left no annals, and the modern world might 
search in vain for inspirations from the ancient. 
II. When the deluge of the Persian arm- 
rolled back to its eastern bed, and the world 
w.i> once more comparatively at rest, the con- 
tinent ot' Greet visibly and majestically 
above the rest of the civilized earth. Afar in 
the Latian plains, the infant state of Rome v 
silently and obscurely struggling into strength 
against the neighbouring and petty .-tates in 
which the old Etrurian civilisation was rapidly 
passing to decay. The genius of Gaul and Cier- 

2 10 ATM I M 

book many, yet unredeemed from barbarism, la] 

,,,, known, save where colonized l>\ Greeks, in the 
t 1 1 .-\ i *. j 

l - gloom of its woods and \va>tes. Tin: pride of < 

thagehad been broken by a signal defeat in Sicily; 
and Gelo, the able ami aetata tyrant of 83 
maintained in 1 Grecian colony, the splendour 
of the Ghredaa nam.'. 

Tin" ambition of Persia, -till the greal mo- 
narchy of the world, was permanently checked 
and crippled ; the strength of generatlOOf bad 
been wasted, ami the imment I of the em- 

pire only served yet more to sustain the general 
peace, from the exhaustion of its forces. The 
defeat of Xerxes paralysed the East. 

Thus, Greece was left secure, and at liberty 
to enjoy the tranquillity it had acquired, and to 
direct to the arts of peace the novel and amazing 
energies which had been prompted by the 
dangers, and exalted by the victories, of war. 

III. The Athenians, now returned to their 
city, saw before them the arduous task of re- 
building its ruins, and restoring its wasted lands. 
The vicissitudes of the war had produced many 
silent and internal, as well as exterior, changes. 
Many great fortunes had been broken ; and 
the ancient spirit of the aristocracy had re- 
ceived no inconsiderable shock in the power 
of new families ; the fame of the base-born 


and democratic Themistocles — and the victoria hook 

which a whole people had participated — broke 

up much of the prescriptive and venerable sane- 1. 
tity attached to ancestral names, and to parti- 
cular families. This was salutary to the spirit 
of enterprise in all classes. The ambition of tin- 
great was excited to restore, by some active 
means, their broken fortunes ami decaying in- 
fluence — the energies of the humbler ranks, al- 
ready aroused by their new importance, w 
stimulated to maintain and to increase it. It 
was the very crisis in which a new direction 
might be given to the habits and the character 
of a whole people ; and to sei/.e all the advan- 
tages of that crisis, Fate, in Themistocles, had 
allotted to Athens a man whose qualities were 
not only pre-eminently great in theSBCetree, but 
peculiarly adapted to the circumstances of the 
time. And, as I have elsewhere remarked, 
it is indeed the nature and prerogative of free 
states, to concentrate the popular will into 
something of the unity of despotism, by pro- 
ducing, one after another, a series of represen- 
tatives of the wants and exigencies of The 
Hour — each leading his generation, but only 
while he sympathizes with its will ; — and 
either baffling or succeeded by his rivals, not 
in proportion as he excels or he is outshone 


242 ati 1 1 \ 

BOOK in jo'iiius, hut as lie <ji\<- or cen- 
to the widest range of the legislative pof 
i. tin; most concentrated force <>f tin executive ; 
thus uniting the of tin -r num- 

ber, under the administration of th< 
possible control ; — the constitution popular— the 
. i riiiiitiit absolute but responsible. 
IV. In the great ei ents of tin- la 
peign, we have lost sight of the hi ^aia- 

mis.* hut tli.' Persian War \\;i- no sooaef 
ended than we find Themisto l> r o- 

minent citizen ofAth< sufficient proof that 

his popularity had not vet diminished, and that 
hi- absence from Plattea was owing to no popular 
caprice <>r party triumph. 

* Mr. Mittbrd attributes his absence from the scene to 
some jealousy of the honours he received at Sparta, and the 
vain glory with which he bore them. But the vague obser- 
vations in the authors he refers to by no means bear out this 
conjecture, nor does it seem probable that the jealousy was 
either general or keen enough to effect so severe a loss to the 
public cause. Menaced with grave and imminent peril, it was 
not while the Athenians were still in the camp, that they 
would have conceived all the petty envies of the forum. The 
jealousies Themistocles excited, were of much later date. 
It is probable that, at this period, he was entrusted with the 
very important charge of watching over and keeping together 
that considerable but scattered part of the Athenian popula- 
tion which was not engaged either at Mycale or Plataea. 





V. In the sweeping revenge of Mardonius, hook 
even private houses had been destroyed, except" 
ing those which had served as lodgments for 
the Persian nobles.* Little of the interna] city, 
less of the outward walls, was spared. As - 
as the Barbarian! had quitted their territory, the 
citizens flocked back with their ilaves and land- 
lies from the various places of refuge ; and the 
first care was to rebuild the city. They were 
already employed upon this* nc task, when 

ambassadors arrived from Sparta, whose vigilant 
government, ever jealous ofs rival, beheld with 
no unreasonable alarm the in cr e asin g navy, and 

the growing fame, of a people hitherto unde- 
niably inferior to the power of LacedflBmou. 

And the fear that was secretly cherished by that 
imperious nation, was \< t more anxiously mu 

by tin- subordinate allies. I Actuated by their 
own and the general apprehensions, the Spar- 
tans therefore m»w requested the Athenians to 
desist from the erection of their walls. Nor 
was it without a certain grace, and a plausible 
excuse, that the government of a city, itself 
unwalled, inveighed against the policy of walls tor 
Athens. The Spartan ambassadors urged that 
fortified towns would become strongholds to the 
Barbarian, should he again invade them ; and 
* Tlnuvil. lib. i. c. 89. f Ibid. lib. i. c. 90. 

H 2 


\ Till 




the walls of Athens might be no leas useful to 
him than Ik- had found the ramparts of The! 

The Peloponnesus, they averted, was tin- I 
timate retreat and the certain n of all ; 

and, unwilling to appear exclusively jealom 
of Athens, they requi ited die Athenian! not 
only to desist from their own fortifications, but 
to join with them in razing every fortification 

without the limit of the Peloponnesus. 

It required not a genius so penetrating as that 
of Themistocles, to divine at once the mot 

of the demand, and the danger of a peremptory 
refusal. He persuaded the Athenians to reply, 
that they would send ambassadors to debate 
the affair ; and dismissed the Spartans without 
further explanation. Themistocles next recom- 
mended to the senate* that he himself might be 
one of the ambassadors sent to Sparta, and that 
those associated with him in the mission (Tor it 
was not the custom of Greece to vest embassies 
in individuals) should be detained at Athens un- 
til the walls were carried to a height sufficient, at 
least, for ordinary defence. He urged his country- 
men to suspend, for this great task, the com- 
pletion of all private edifices — nay, to spare no 
building, private or public, from which mate- 
rials might be adequately selected. The whole 
* Diod. Sic. lib. xi.; Thucyd. lib. i. c. 90. 


population, slaves, women, and children, were book 

to assist in the labour. 

VI. This counsel adopted, be sketched an i 

outline of the conduct he himself intended to 

pursue, and departed for Sparta. His col- 
leagues, no less important than Aristides, end 
Abronychus, a distinguished officer in tie' 1 
war, were to follow at the time agreed on. 

Arrived in the Laconian capital, Themistocles 
demanded no public audience, avoided all occa- 
sions of opening- the questions in dispute, and 
screened the policy of delay beneath the excuse 
that his colleagues were not yet arrived — that he 
was incompetent to treat without their counsel 
and concurrence — and that doubtless they would 
•peedily appear in Sparta. 

When we consider the shortness of the dis- 
tance between the >niniunieations 
the Spartans would receive from the neighbour- 
ing jEginetans, more jealous than themseh 
and the astute ami proverbial sagacity of the 
Spartan council — it is impotable to believe, that 
for so long a period as, with the giv; pe- 
dition, must have elapsed from the departure 
of Theinistocles to the ncCCflflliTJ progress in the 
fortifications, the Ephors could have been igno- 
rant of the preparations at Athens, or the designs 
ofThemistocles. I fear, therefore, that we must be- 

246 \iiii\ 

ijook lieve, with Theopompns,* thai Themistorlr*, the 
most expert, briber of hie time, heightened I 
i- esteem which Thueydidei -par- 

tans bore him, l»v private tod pecuniar} d< 

tiations with the Ephors. At length, I 

SUcll decided ;i!i<l unequivocal intelligeOO 
the PTOgreai of the Valll arrived at Sparta, that 

the Ephors eould no longer feel or affect in- 

erediliit\ . 

Themittoclea met the remonstrance! ot the 

Bnartam by an appearance of* candour, ming 

with di-dain. H Why," said lie, " give Credit to 
these idle nunour> I Bend to Atle 
sengers of your own, in whom you can confide ; 
let them inspect matters with their own i 
and report to you accordingly." 

The Ephors (not unreluctantly, if the ;>- 
tion of Theopoinpus may he credited] yielded to 
so plausible a suggestion, and in the m 
while the crafty Athenian despatched a s« 
messenger to Athens, urging the Government 
to detain the Spartan ambassadors with as little 
semblance of design as possible, and by no 
means to allow their departure, until the safe 
return of their own mission to Sparta. For it 
was by no means improbable, that without such 
hostages, even the Ephors, however powerful and 

* Ap. Pint, in vit. Them. 



however influenced, might not be enabled, when book 
the Spartans generally were made acquainted 
with the deceit practised upon them, to p 
the arrest of the Athenian delegates.* 

At length, the walls, continued night and 
day with incredible zeal and toil, were suffi- 
ciently completed ; and disguise, BO longer p 
•ible, was no longer useful. Tliemi de- 

manded the audience lie had hitherto deterr 
and boldly avowed that Athens was now so far 
fortified as to protect it- ci " In futu; 

he udded, haughtily, " when Sparta or our other 

confederates send ambassadors to Athene, let 

them addr< • people well in our 

own iiu and the into i our common 

Greece. When we deserted Athens for our 

ships, we required and obtained no 1 mo- 

nian succours to support our native valour ; in 
all subsequent measure-, to whom Inc. 
shown ourselves inferior, whether in the council 
or the Held? At present we have judged it « 
pedient to fortify our cits, rendering it thus 
more secure for ouiselves ami our allies. Nor 

* Diodorus (lib. xi.) tells us that the Spartan ambassa- 
dors, indulging in threatening and violent language at per- 
ceiving the walls so far advanced, were arrested by the 
Athenians, who declared they would only release them on 
receiving back sate and uninjured their own ambassadors. 

(II \p. 


booi would it be possible, with a strength inferior to 
that of any rival power, Adequately to p 
i. and equally to adjust the balance of the liber- 
ties of Greece/** 

Contending for this equality, In- argued thai 
either all the cities in tin- LacedsBmonian leag 
Bnould be dismantled of their fortresses, or that it 
should be conceded, that, in erecting fortresses 

for herself, Athens had rightly acted. 

VII. The profound and pa>sionless poll' 
Sparta forbade all outward Signs of unavailing 
and unreasonable resentment. The Spartans 
therefore replied, with seeming courtesy, that 
" in their embassy they had not sought to dic- 
tate, but to advise— that their object was the 
common good ;" and they accom pa nied their 
excuses with professions of friendship for Athens, 
and panegyrics on the Athenian valour in the 
recent war. But the anger they forbore to show 
only rankled the more bitterly within. f 

The ambassadors of either state returned 
home ; and thus the mingled firmness and craft 
of Themistocles, so well suited to the people 
with whom he had to deal, preserved his coun- 
try from the present jealousies of a yet more 
deadly and implacable foe than the Persian 
king, and laid the foundation of that claim of 
* Thucyd. lib. i. c. 91. f Ibid. lib. i. c. 92. 


equality with the most eminent state of Greece, book 
which he hastened to strengthen and enlarge. 


The ardour of the Athenians in their work of i 
fortification, had spared no material which had 
the recommendation of strength. The walk 
everywhere presented, and long continued 
to exhibit, an evidence of the haste in which 
they were built. Motley and rough hewn, 
and uncouthly piled, they recalled, age after 
age, to the traveller, the name of the abh >t 
statesman, and the most heroic days, of Athena, 
There, at frequent intervals, would he survey 
stones wrought in the rude fashion of format 
times, — ornamenti borrowed Iran the antique 
edifices demolished by the Made, — and frieze 
and column plucked from dismantled sepul- 
chres ; — so that even the dead contributed from 
their tombs to the defence of Athene, 

\ III. Encouraged by the new popularity and 
honours which followed the success of his mis- 
sion, Themistocles now began to consummate 
the vast schemes lie had formed, not onlv for 
the aggrandisement of his country, but for the 
change in the manners of the citizens. All that 
is left to us of this wonderful man proves that, 
if excelled by others in austere virtue, or in 
dazzling accomplishment, lie stands unrivalled 
for the profound and far-sighted nature of his 




250 vmr.vs: 

BOOK policy. lie seems unlike moil of his l)rilli;int 

countrymen, to have been little influenced by the 
tallies of impulse, or tin- miserable expedient 
of faction — liis schemes denote ;t mind ac1 
On gigantic systems; and it is astonishing with 
what virtuous motives and with w 1 1 : * t proph< 
art lie worked through petty and individually 
considered dishonest meam to grand and p 
nument results. Il«- standi out to the gaze tf 

time, tlie model of what and t'ortui. 

-man sliould be, so lo mankind hi 

evil passions, as well as lofty virtues, and 
State that he see!. Hurrotmded l>\ 

pow e r Ad and restless foes, whom it i- w 
to overreach where it is dangerous to offend. 

In the year previous to the Persian war, The- 
mistocles had filled the office of An hon ;* and 

* Schol. ad Thucyd. lib. i. c. 93. Sec Clinton. Fasti Hell, 
vol. ii. Introduction, pp. 13 and 14. Mr. Thirhvall, vol. ii. 
p. 401, disputes the date for the archonship of Themistocles 
given by Mr. Clinton and confirmed by the scholiast on 
Thucydides. He adopts (page 3G6) the date which M. 
Boeckh founds upon Philochorus, viz. b. c. 493. But the 
Themistocles who was archon in that year is evidently 
another person from the Themistocles of Salamis; for in 
493 that hero was about twenty-one, an age at which 
the bastard of Neocles might be driving courtezans in 
a chariot, (as is recorded in Athenaeus,) but was certainly 
not archon of Athens. As for M. Boeckh's proposed emen- 


25 I 

had already in that year planned the construe- BOOK 
tion of a harbour in the ancient done of Piraeus,* 
for the convenience of the fleet which A 1 1 1 - I* 

had formed. Late events had frustrated tin- 
continuance of the labour, and Themistochs now 
resolved to renew and complete it, probably <>n 
a larger and more elaborate scale. 

The port of Phalerum had hitherto bee* the 
main harbour of Athens — one wholly inade- 
quate to the new navy she had acquired ; ano- 

dation, quoted so respectfully by Mr. Thirhvall, by which 
we are to read 'T0fn\ifo* 1,)r Kdftfniots i! -umption 

so purely fanciful as to require DO argument tor refusing it 
belief. Mr. Clinton's date for the archonship of the - 
Themistochs is the one most ■uppotted by internal evidence 
— 1st, by the blanks of the years 481-489 in the list of ar- 
ehons ; ihidly. by the age, the position, and repute, of 
mistocles in 11. c. 4S1, two years after the ostracism of his 
rival Aristides. It' it were reduced to a mere contest of pro- 
babilities between Mr. Clinton on one side and Mr. Poeckh 
and Mr. Thirlwall on the other, which is the more likely, that 
Themistocles should have been chief archon of Athei 
twenty-one or at thirty-three — before the battle of Marathon 
or after his triumph over Aristides ? In tact, a sc hoolboy 
knows that at twenty-one (and Themist certainly 

not older in 493) no Athenian could have been archon. In 
all probability Ke/3ptdoc is the right reading, in Philochorus, 
and furnishes us with the name of the archon in b. c. 487 or 
486, which years have hitherto been chronological blank - 
far as the Athenian archons are concerned. 
* Pausan. lib. i. c. 1. 

2'Jo A THEN 

HOOK ther inlet, Munvehia, «M Jti moiv incot) 

nient. But, equally at hand, was the capaci< 
1 though oeglected port of Pii i formed by 

nature as to permit of s perfect fortification 
against a hostile fleet. Of Piraeus, therefore, 
Themistocles now designed to construct th<- 
most ample and the most advantageous harbour 
throughout all Gi Be looked upon this 

task at the foundation of* his favourite and i 
ambitions p r oj ect ; \i/.. the lecturing to Athene 
the sovereignty of the sea.* 
The completion of the port the increased 

navy, which the construction of the new luirhour 
would induce — the fame already acquired by 

Athens in maritime warfare, encouraging atten- 
tion to naval discipline and tactics —proffered a 
splendid opening to the ambition of a people at 
once enterprising and commercial. Tbemist 
hoped that the results of his policy would enahle 
the Athenians to gain over their own offspring, 
the Ionian colonies, and by their means to deliver 
from the Persian yoke, and permanently attach 
to the Athenian interest, all the Asiatic Greeks. 
Extending his views, he beheld the various insu- 
lar states united to Athens by a vast maritime 
power, severing themselves from Lacedaemon, and 
following the lead of the Attican Republic. He 
saw his native city thus supplanting, by a naval 

* Diod. lib. xi. 


force, the long-won pre-eminence and iron su- hook 
premacy of Sparta upon land, and so extending ' 

her own empire, while she sapped secretly and 1. 
judiciously the authority of the most formidable 
of her rivals. 

IX. But in the execution of these grand do- 
signs Themistocles could not but anticipate con- 
siderable difficulties: first, in the jealousy of the 
Spartans, and secondly, in the popular and long- 
rooted prejudices of the Athenians themseh 
Hitherto they had discouraged maritime affairs 
and their more popular leaders had directed at- 
tention to agricultural pursuits. We may sup- 
pose, too, that the Mountaineers, or agricultural 
party, not the least powerful, would resist so 
great advantage! to the motion of the Coast- 
men, if acquainted with all the results which 
the new policy would produce. Nor could so 
experienced a leader of mankind be ineenaible 
of those often not insalutary c ona e qoen oea of 
a free state in the changing humours of a wide 
democracy — their impatience at pecuniary de- 
mands — their quick and sometimes uncharita- 
ble apprehensions of the motives of their advi. 
sers. On all accounts it was necessary, there- 
fore, to act with as much caution as the task 
would admit — rendering the design invidious 
neither to foreign, nor to domestic, jealousies. 
Themistocles seems to have steered his course 

254 \im.s-s: 

book through every difficulty with hi- usual :wl dress. 
Stripping the account of* Diodorus * of its impro- 
'■ baole details, it. appears credible ;it least that 
Themistocl ired, in the first instance, the 

eo-operation of Xanthippus and Aristides, the 
lirad- of tli«' great parties generally .1 to 

his BMaanrea, sad that be iron the democrat 
consent that the outline <»}* his schemes Bhould 
not be submitted to the popular assembly, l>: 
the Council <»t' Five Hundred. It is perfectly 
clear, bow< rer, that, as soon ;i- the plan 
ried into active operation, the Athenians could 
not, as Diodonu would lead as to suppose, have 
been kept in i gn o ran ce of it-- nature ; and all 
of the tale of Diodorus to which we can lend our 
belief is, that the people permitted the Five 
Hundred to examine the project, and that the 
popular assembly ratified the approbation of that 
senate without inquiring; the reasons upon which 
it was founded. 

X. The next care of Themistocles was to an- 
ticipate the jealousy of Sparta, and forestal her 
interference. According to Diodorus, he de- 
spatched, therefore, ambassadors to Lacedaemon, 
representing" the advantages of forming a port 
which might be the common shelter of Greece, 
should the Barbarian renew his incursions ; but 
it is so obvious that Themistocles could hardly 

* Diod. lib. xi. 



disclose to Sparta the very project h<- at first BOOK 
concealed from the Athenians, that while we 
may allow the fact that Themittoclei t reated *• 
with the Spartans, we must gi?e him credit, 
at least, lor more crafty diplomacy than that 
ascrihed to him by Diodorus. But what* 
the pretexts with which he sought to amuse ot 
beguile the Spartan government, they apj 

least tO have been BUCCessful. And tl 111- 

ary indifference of the Spartan- towards mari- 
time affairs was strengthened at this peculiar 
time by engrossing anxieties as to the conduct of 
Pauaanias. Thus Taemistocies, sale alike from 
foreign ami from civil obstacles, pursued with 
tivity the execution of his schemes. The Pin 
was fortified by walls of amazing thick 

to admit two carts ale Within, the entire 

structure was composed of solid masonry, hewn 

* Diod. lib. xi. The reader will perceive that I do not 

Agree with Mr. Thirlwall and BOOBS Other scholars, for \u 
general opinion I have the highest respect, in rejecting alto- 
gether, and with contempt, the account of Diodorus. as to 
the precautions of Themistocles. It seems to me highly 
probable that the main features of the story are presented to 
us faithfully ; 1st, that it was not deemed expedient to detail 
to the popular assembly all the objects and motives of the 
proposed construction of the new port ; and, ihully, that The- 
mistocles did not neglect to send ambassadors to Sparta, 
though certainly not with the intention of dealing more 
frankly with the Spartans than he had done with the Athenians. 

•jr><; ati 1 1 a 

iioiiK square, so that each stone fitted exactly , and 
farther strengthened on tin- outside by cram] 
i. iron. The walk were never carried above half 
the height originally proposed, hut th<- whole 

was so arranged as to form a fortrOM Sgainsf 
assault, too fondly deemed impregnable, and to 
he adequately manned by the smallest possible 
number of citizens ; -<» thai tin- main force mi 
in time of danger, be ipared to the fleet. 
Thus Tlnmistocles created a sea-fortress more 

important than the city it-elf, conformably to the 

advice he frequently gave to the Athenians, that 
if hard pressed by land, they should retire to 
this arsenal, and rely, against all hostilities, on 
their naval force.* 

The new port, which soon bore the ambi- 
tious title of the Lower City, was placed un- 
der the directions of Hippodamus, a Milesian, 
who, according to Aristotle, f was the first 
author who, without any knowledge of practi- 
cal affairs, wrote upon the theory of govern- 
ment. Temples, J a market-place, even a the- 

* Thucyd. lib. i. 

■f Aristot. Pol. lib. ii. Aristotle deems the speculations 
of the philosophical architect worthy of a severe and search- 
ing criticism. 

I Of all the temples, those of Minerva and Jupiter were 
the most remarkable, in the time of Pausanias. There were 
then two market-places. See Pausanias, lib. i. c. 1. 


atrc, distinguished and enriched the new book 


town. And the population that filled it were 

c 1 1 \ i' 
not long before they contracted and established i. 

a character for themselves different in many 
traits and attributes from the citizens of the an- 
cient Athens — more bold, wayward, innovating. 
and tumultuous. 

Hut if Sparta deemed it prudent, at present, 
to avoid a direct assumption of influence over 
Athens, her scheming councils were no leaf bent, 
though by indirect and plausible means, to the 
extension of her own power. To use the simile 
applied to one of Iter own chiefs, where the lion - 
skin fell short, she sought to eke it by the fox's. 

At the assembly of the Amphictyons, the 
Lacedemonian delegates moved that all th- 
states who had not joined in the Anti-Persic con- 
federacy should be expelled the council. Under 
this popular and patriotic proposition WM saga- 
ciously concealed the increase of the Spartan 
authority ; for had the Thessalians, Arrives, ami 
Thebans, (voices ever counter to the Lacedamo- 
nians,) been expelled the assembly, the Laeethe- 
monian party would have secured the preponder- 
ance of votes, and the absolute dictation of that 
ancient council.* 

* Yet at this time the Ainphictyonic Council W9M M feeble, 
that had the Spartans succeeded they would have made but 


hook But Themistocles, who seemed endowed with 


■ Spartan sagacity lor the foiling tin- Spartan 
i interests, resitted the proposition by arguments do 

less popular. He represented to tin* d< 
thai it was unjust to punish rtatei for the en 
of their leaden thai only thirty-one cities had 
contributed t<> the burden of the war, and m 
of those inconsiderable thai it was equally dan- 
gerous and absurd to exclude from th<- general 
Grecian councils tin proportion of the 

Grecian states. 

The arguments of Themistoclea prevailed, but 
his success stimulated yet more sharply against 
him the rancour of the Lacedaemonians ; and, 
unable to resist him abroad, they thenceforth 
resolved to undermine his authority at home. 

XI. While, his danger invisible, Thamis- 
tocles was increasing with his own pow r er that of 
the state, the allies were bent on new enter- 
prises and continued retribution. From Persia, 
now humbled and exhausted, it was the moment 
to wrest the Grecian towns, whether in Europe 
or in Asia, over which she yet arrogated domi- 
nion — it was resolved, therefore, to fit out a 
fleet, to which the Peloponnesus contributed 

a hollow acquisition of authority ; unless, indeed, with the 
project of gaining a majority of votes, they united another for 
reforming or reinvigorating the institution. 


twenty and Athens thirty vessels. Aristides pre- book 

sided over the latter ; Pausaniae was commander- 

' t CRAP. 

in-chief; many other of the allies joined the 1. 
expedition. They sailed to Cyprus, and red** 
with case most of the towns in that island. 
Thence proceeding to Byzantium, the main 
strength and citadel of Persia upon those tOMltj 
and the link between her European and Asiatic 
dominions, they blockaded the town and ulti- 
mately carried it. 

But these foreign events, however important 
in themselves, were trifling in comparison with 
a revolution which accompanied them, and which, 
in suddenly raising Athens to the supreme com- 
mand of allied Greece, may be regarded at m 
as the author of the coming greatness — and 
the subsequent reverses— of that republic. 

XII. The habits of Sparta — austere, stern, 
unsocial — rendered her ever more effectual in 
awing foes than conciliating allies; and the 
manners of the soldiery were at this time not 
in any way redeemed or counterbalanced by 
those of the chief. Since the battle of Platam. 
a remarkable change was apparent in Pausa- 
nias. Glory had made him arrogant, and sud- 
den luxury ostentatious. He had graven on the 
golden tripod, dedicated by the confederates 
to the Delphic god, an inscription, claiming ex- 

s 2 

2G0 atiii \ 

mm clnsively to himself, m the general of the G 

cian army, tin- conquest of the Barbarians in 
l otism no lem at variance with the sober pride of 

Sparta, than it iras offensive t<> the just vanitj of 
the allies. The inscription w:i- afterwardi msed 
by tin- Spartan government, :iu<1 another, biting 
only the names of the confederate cities, and -i 
It-ii t. psj lo that <>| Pausanias, wai substituted in 
its place. 

XIII. To a man of thii arrogance, and 
grasping and already luocessfuJ ambition, eSr- 
ctunstances now presented great and irresistible 
temptation. Though leader of the Grecian ar- 
mies, he was but Ae uncle and proxy of the 
young Spartan king — the time most come when 
his authority would cease, and the eonqueror 
of the superb Mardonius sink into the nar- 
row and severe confines of a Spartan citizen. 
Possessed of great talents and many eminent 
qualities, they but served the more to discon- 
tent him with the limits of their legitimate 
sphere and the sterility of the Spartan life. 
And this discontent, operating on a temper 
naturally haughty, evinced itself in a manner 
rude, overbearing, and imperious, which the 
spirit of his confederates was ill calculated to 
suffer or forgive. 

But we can scarcely agree with the ancient his- 



toiians in attributing the ascendency of the A the- book 

nians alone, or even chiefly, to the conduct of 

•f ' cm \i . 

Pausanias. The present expedition was na\al, I 
and the greater part of theconfedei Byzan- 

tium were maritime powers. The superior fh 
and the recent naval glories, of the Athenians, 
could not fail to give them, at this juncture 
moral pre-eminence over the other allies ; and 
we shall observe, that the Ionian-, ami th 
who had lately recovered their freedom from the 
Persian yoke,* were especially desirous to i 
change the Spartan for the Athenian command. 
Connected with the Athenians by origin — by 
maritime habits— by a kindred suavity and grace 

of temperament — by the constant teal of the 

Athenians for their liberties which made indeed 
the first cause of the Persian war — it was natu- 
ral that the Ionian Greeks should prefer the 
standard of Athens to that of a Doric State ; and 
the proposition of the Spartans, (baffled by Athe- 
nian councils,) to yield up die Ionic settlements 
to the Barbarian-, could not but bequeath a 1 
ing resentment to those proud and polished 
colon i. 

XIV. Aware of the offence he had given, and 
disgusted, himself, alike with his allies and his 
country, the Spartan chief became driven by 
rhucyd. lib. i. c, 96. 

'Jfi'J ATHENS : 

book nature and necessity to a dramatic sit nm i 
which a future Schiller may perhapc render 

i. more interesting than tin; treason of the ( 
geousWallenstein, to whose ch that ol Pau- 

sanias lias been indirectly likened.* Tin- eap- 
ture of Byzantium brought the Spartan 
into eontaet with many captured and Doble I 
sian-,| Itlrffftgtl whom WCtt some related to 

Xerxes himself. With these cojHremog, Dei and 
da/./.ling views were o|)ened to hit ambition. He 
could not but recal the example of Demaratus, 
whose exile from the barren dignities oi 
hid procured him the luxurie- ami the splendour 
of oriental pomp, with the delegated authority of 
three of the fairest cities of iEolia. Greater in 
renown than Demaratus, he was necessarily 
more aspiring in his views. Accordingly he 
privately released his more exalted prisoners, 
pretending they had escaped, and finally ex- 
plained whatever messages he had entrusted by 
them to Xerxes, in a letter to the king, confided 
to an Eretrian, named Gongylus, who was ve: 
in the language and the manners of Persia, and 
to whom he had already deputed the govern- 
ment of Byzantium. In this letter, Pausanias 
offered to assist the king in reducing Sparta and 

* Heeren. Pol. Hist, of Greece. 
t Corn. Nep. in vit. Paus. 


the rest of Greece to the Persian yoke, demand- book 

. IV. 

ing, in recompense, the hand of the king's 

daughter, with an adequate dowry of possession- L 
and of power. 

XV. The time had passed when a Persian 
monarch could deride the loftiness of a Spartan- 
pretensions — Xerxes received the communica- 
tions with delight, and despatched Artabazu- t<> 
succeed Megabates in Phrygia, and to concert 
with the Spartan upon the means wherel»\ 
to execute their joint design.* But while Pau- 
sanias was in the full flush of his dazzled and 
grasping hopes, his fall was at hand. Occupied 
with his new projects, hi> natural haughtin 
increased daily, lie never accosted the ofHc 
of the allies but with abrupt and overhearing 
insolence ; lie insulted the military pride by 
sentencing many of the soldiers to corporeal 
chastisement, or to stand all day with an iron 
anchor on their shoulders. f He permitted none 
to seek water, forage, or litter, until the Spar- 
tans were first supplied — those who attempted 
it were driven away bv rods. Even Aristides, 
seeking to remonstrate, was repulsed rudely. — 
" I am not at leisure," said the Spartan, with a 
frown, j 

* Thucyd. lib. i. c. 129. -}- Plut. in vit. Arist. 

X Plut. in vit. Arist. 

264 a 1 1 1 in 

hook ( lomplaints of this treatment srere despatch* «1 

i \ ■ 

to Sparta, and in tin- meanwhile tin* confederal 


i. especially the officers af Chios «, sad 

Lesbos, pressed Ari>tid< •» to take on himself the 
general commandi and protect them firom Ibe 
Spartan- insoli -nee The Athenian artrullj 
plied, that In- ian the necessity of the prop 
tion. but that U 'ought first to be authorized by 
seme action which would render it impossibl 
iecode from the new arrangement once formed. 
The hint pas fiercely taken ; and a Samian 
and a Chian officer, resolving to push matters to 
the e\tn -iin \ openly and boldly attacked the 

galley of Pausanias himself si the head of die 

fleet. Disregarding his angry menaces, now im- 
potent, this assault was immediately followed up 

by a public transfer of allegiance ; and the ag- 
gressors, quitting the Spartan, arrayed th 
selves under the Athenian, banner-. Whatever 
might have been the consequences of this insur- 
rection were prevented by the sudden recal of 
Pausanias. The accusations against him had 
met a ready hearing in Sparta, and that watch- 
ful government had already received intimation 
of his intrigues with the Mede. On his arri- 
val in Sparta, Pausanias was immediately sum- 
moned to trial, convicted in a fine for individual 
and private misdemeanors, but acquitted of the 


principal charge of treason with the Persians — BOOK 
not so much from the deficiency afl from the 

J (HAP. 

abundance of proof; * and it was probably pro* [ - 

dent to avoid, if possible, the scandal which the 
conviction of the general might bring upon the 

The Spartans sent Dorcis, with sonic col- 
leagues, to replace Pausanias in the command } 
but the allies were already too disgusted with 
the yoke of that nation to concede it. And 
the Athenian ascendency was hourly confirmed 
by the talents, the bearing, and the affable 
and gracious mannert <>t' Aristides. With him 

was joined an associate of high hereditary name 

and strong natural abilities, whose character it 

will shortly become DPCCMlTy to place in detail 

before the reader. This co-mate was no 1, — 
parson than Cimon, the ion of the great Mil- 


XVI. Dorcis, finding his pretension- 
fully rebutted, returned home; and the Sparta- 
never prone to foreign enterprise, anxious lor 
cases to free themselves from prosecuting further 
the Persian war, and fearful that renewed conten- 
tions might only render yet more unpopular the 
Spartan name, sent forth no fresh claimants to 
the command ; they affected to yield that honour, 
* Tbucyd. lib. i. 

206 ATHENS: 

hook with cheerful content, to tin- Athenian*. Thni 

was effected, without a Mow, ami x% i 1 1 j the <<>n- 

i. tnrtence of her moot dreaded rival, that erent- 

ful revolution, which suddenly Baited Athena, 

so secondary a state hefore the Persian war 
B.C.47T. the supremacy over Greece. So much, when 
nations have an equal "J^lory, can tin; one be 
bfonght to surpass the other, by the superior 

wisdom of individuals. The victory of PI 
was won principally by Sparta, then at the 
head of (ireece. And tin- genera] who sub- 
dued the Persians s urr e n d ered the results of his 
victory to the very ally from whom tin; g 
cious jealousy of his countrymen had sought 
most carefully to exclude even the precautioi 
defence ! 

XVII. Aristides, now invested with the com- 
mand of all the allies, save those of the Pelo- 
ponnesus who had returned home, strengthened 
the Athenian power by every semblance of mo- 

Hitherto, the Grecian confederates had sent 
their deputies to the Peloponnesus. Aristides, 
instead of naming Athens, which might have 
excited new jealousies, proposed the sacred Isle 
of Delos, a spot peculiarly appropriate, since it 
once had been the navel of the Ionian commerce, 
as the place of convocation and the common 


treasury : — the temple was to be the senate house, book 

A new distribution of the taxes levied on each 

state, for the maintenance of the league, was or- i. 

dained. The objects of the league, were both 
defensive and offensive; first, to guard the 
iEgaean coasts and the Grecian Isles, ami Mcood- 
ly, to undertake measures for the further weaken- 
ing of the Persian power. Aristides was elected 
arbitrator in the relative proportions of the ge- 
neral taxation. In this office, which placed tin- 
treasures of Greece at his diipinil. he acted 
with so disinterested a virtue, that he did not 
e\en incur the suspicion of having enriched him- 
self, and with so rare a fortune that he con- 
tented all the allies. The total, rai-»-d annually, 
and with the strictest impartiality, was four hun- 
dred ami Sixty talent-, (computed at about one 
hundred and fifteen thousand pounds.) 

Greece resounded with the praises of Aris- 
tides ; it was afterwards equally loud in repro- 
bation of the avarice of the Athenians. For 
with the appointment of Aristides comment 
the institution of officers styled Hellenotamiae, 
or treasurers of Greece ; they became a perma- 
nent magistracy — they were under the control 
of the Athenians; and thus that people were 
made at once the generals, and the treasurers, of 
Greece. But the Athenians, unconscious as yet 
of the power they had attained — their allies yet 

268 ATIIIA- 

book more blind it teemed now, that the more the 
latter should confide, tin- more tin- former -houM 
i. forbear. 80 do the most important resulti arise 
from eausefl uncontemplated by the pro\ idem 

Matrsmeii, and heiin- do ire learn a truth which 
should never he forgotten — that that power If 

ever the nm-i certain of endurance and extent, 
the commencement of which is made popular by 

Will. Thus. DpOB the decay of the Isthmian 
Congress, rose into existence the great Ionian 
League ; and thus w9» opened to the- ambition of 
Athens the splendid destiny of the empire 
the Grecian Seas. The pre-eminence of Sparta 
passed away from her, though invisibly and 
without a struggle, and retiring within herself, 
she was probably unaware of the decline of her 
authority ; — still seeing her Peloponnesian alli<- 
gathering round her, subordinate and submis- 
sive ; and, by refusing assistance, refusing also 
allegiance, to the new queen of the Ionian 
League. His task fulfilled, Aristides probably 
returned to Athens, and it was at this time and 
henceforth that it became his policy to support 
the power of Cimon against the authority of 
Themistocles.* To that eupatrid, joined before 

* Plut. in vit. Cimon. Before this period, Cimon, though 
rising into celebrity, could scarcely have been an adequate 
rival to Themistocles. 


with himself, was now entrusted the command iiodk 
of the Grecian fleet. 


To great natural abilities, Cimon added everj i. 
advantage of birth and circumstance* Hi- mo- 
ther was a daughter of Olorus, a Thraeian prim 
his father the great Miltiades. On the death of 
the latter, it is recorded, and popularly believed, 
that Cimon, unable to pay the fine to which Mil- 
tiades was adjudged, was detained in custody 
until a wealthy marriage made by hi- natal 
Elpinice, to whom he was tenderly, and an- 
cient scandal whispered improperly, attached, 
released him from confinement, and the brother- 
in-law paid the debt. " Thus severe and harsh,*" 
says Nepos, u was liis ftntraffl upon manhood."* 
Hut it is very doubtful whether Ciinon WM e\ vr 
imprisoned for the state-debt, incurred by his 
father — and his wealth appear! to have I.. 
considerable even before he regained hii patri- 
mony in the Chersonese, or enriched himself 
with the Persian spoils. f 

In early youth, like Themistocles, his con- 

* Corn. Nep. in vit. Cini. 

t According to Diodorus, Cimon early in lite made a very 
wealthy marriage : Themistocles recommended him to a rich 
father-in-law, in a witticism, which, with a slight variation, 
Plutarcn has also recorded, though he does not give its ap- 
plication to Cimon. 

270 \iiii.\ 

book duct had been wild and dissolute; 4 and with 
his father from a child. h<- had acquired, with 

CHAP . V - 

i. the experience, something of the li< •• 

camps. Like Themi also, be irai little 

skilled in the graceful accomplishments of nil 
countrymen ; he cultivated neither 1 1 j • 

music, nor the brilliancies of Attic coi ion; 

hut power and fortune, which ever soften nature, 
afterwards rendered his hahits intellectual, and 
his lined. He had not the imOOtfa and 

artful affability of Themistocles, but to a certain 
roughness of manner was conjoined that hearty 
and ingenuous frankness, which ever concili 
mankind, especially in free states, and which is 
yet more popular when united to rank. He had 
distinguished himself highly by his zeal in the 
invasion of the Medes, and the desertion of 
Athens for Salamis ; and his valour in the 
fight had confirmed the promise of his previous 
ardour. Nature had gifted him with a hand- 
some countenance and a majestic stature, re- 
commendations in all, but especially in popular, 
states — and the son of Miltiades was welcomed, 
not less by the people than by the nobles, when 
he applied for a share in the administration of 
the state. Associated with Aristides, first in the 
embassy to Sparta, and subsequently in the ex- 
* Corn. Nep. in vit. Cim. 



peditions to Cyprus and Byzantium, he had book 
profited by the friendship and the lessons of that 
great man, to whose party he belonged, and i. 
who saw in Cimon a less invidious opponent 
than himself to the policy or the ambition of 

By the advice of Aristides, Cimon i 
sought every means to conciliate the allies, and 
to pave the way to the undivided command lie 
afterwards obtained. And it is not improbable 
that Themistocles might willingly have ceded to 
him the lead in a foreign expedition, which re- 
moved from the city so rising and active an op- 
ponent. The appointment of Cimon pvosnsssd 

to propitiate the Spartans, who ever possessed a 
certain party in the aristocracy of Athens— a ho 
peculiarly affected Cimon, and whose hardy cha- 
racter and oligarchical policy, the blunt genius 
and hereditary prejudices of that young noble 
were well fitted to admire and to imitate. Ci- 
mon was, in a word, precisely the man desired 
by three parties as the antagonist of Themis- 
tocles ; viz. the Spartans, the nobles, and Aris- 
tides, himself a host. All things conspired to 
raise the son of Miltiades to an eminence beyond 
his years, but not his capacities. 

XIX. Under Cimon the Athenians commenced 
their command,* by marching against a Thra- 

* Thucyd. lib. i. 

272 \uii.\ 

book cian town called Eion, rituated on the banki o{ 
the river Strymou, and now garrisoned bj ;i 
i. Penian noble. The town was besieged, end 
b.c. 476. tnc inhabitanti pressed by famine, when the 
Persian commandant collecting his treasure 
upon a pile <>f wood, on which were placed bis 
slaves, women, and children Bel fire to tin- 
pile.* After this suicide, seemingly no? an un- 
common mode of self-slaughter in the East, the 
garrison surrendered, and it- defenders, as usual 
in such war (are, were sold fin slai 

From Eion, the victorious confederates pro- 
ceeded to Scyros, a small island in the /Egaean, 
inhabited by the Dolopians, a tribe addicted to 
piratical practices, deservedly obnoxious to the 
traders of the iEgaean, and who already bad at- 
tracted the indignation and vengeance of the 
Amphictyonic assembly. The isle occupied, and 
the pirates expelled, the territory was colonized 
by an Attic population. 

An ancient tradition had, as we have seen 
before, honoured the soil of Scyros with the pos- 
session of the bones of the Athenian Theseus — 
some years after the conquest of the isle, in the 
archonshipof Aphepsion, for Apsephion, an oracle 

* Thucyd. lib. i. Plut. in vit. Cim. Diod. Sic. lib. xi. 
•f See Clinton, Fast. Hell. vol. ii. p. 34, in comment upon 



ordained the Athenians to search for the remain! BOOK 
of their national hero, and the skeleton of a man of 

< 1 1 A 1 . 

great stature, with a lance of bra* and ■ iword, '• 
by its side, was discovered, and immediately ap- 
propriated to Theseus. The bone- \\. iv phi 
with great ceremony in the galley of Ciinon, 
who was then probably on a visit of inspection 
to the new colony, and transported to Athena. 
(James were instituted in honour of this i-wnt, 
at which were exhibited the contests of the tragic 
poets ; and, in the first of these, Sophocles is 
said to have made his earliest appearance, and 
gained the prize from iEschylus. 

XXI. It is about the period of Cimon*S con- 
quest of Eion and Scyros, that we most dale the 
declining power of Themiatoelea. That remark- bjc 470. 

able man had already added, both to duinotie 

and to Spartan enmities, the general displeasure 

of the allies. After baffling the proposition of 
the Spartans to banish from the Amphietvonic 
assembly, the states that had nut joined in the 

anti-Persic confederacy, lie had sailed round 
the isles and extorted money from such as had 
been guilty of Medising : the pretext might be 
just, but the exactions were unpopularly levied. 
Nor is it improbable that the accusations against 
him of enriching his own coffers, as well as 
the public treasury, had some foundation. Pro- 


27 I \ i in ns : 

hook fottndly disdaining money tttft us a m< 

;ui end —he was little scrupulous as to the sou 

(IIAI '- , i • i i 

i. whence be sustained ;i power which he yei ap- 
plied conscientiously t<> patriotic purpose*. Sen - 
Ing his country first, be also served himself; and 
hones! upon oik- grand an tnatic principle, 

ho was often diahoneefl in detail*, 

Hi- natural temper was also ostentatii 

like many wlio have risen from an origin eom- 
parativoly humble, he bad the vanity to 

outshine his, superiors in birth — not more bj 

the splendour of genius than by the mag 
ficence of parade. At the Olympic games, tin: 
base-born son of Neocles surpassed the pomp of* 
the wealthy and illustrious Cimon ; his table 
was hospitable, and his own life soft and luxu- 
riant ;* his retinue numerous, beyond thoi 
his contemporaries ; and he adopted the man 
of the noble exactly in proportion as he courted 
the favour of the populace. This habitual osten- 
tation could not fail to mingle with the political 
hostilities of the aristocracy, the disdainful jea- 
lousies of offended pride ; for it is ever the weak- 
ness of the high-born to forgive less easily the 
being excelled in genius, than the being outshone 
in state, by those of inferior origin. The same 
haughtiness which offended the nobles began 

* Athenaeus, lib. xii. 


also to displease the people; tin- superb consci- book 


ousness of his own merits wounded the vanitv of a 

, • , , ■ • * CHAP. 

nation which scarcely permitted it- st men i. 

to share the reputation it arrogated to itself. 
The frequent calumnies uttered against him, 
obliged Themistocles to refer to the actions he 
had performed ; and what it had been illus- 
trious to execute, it became disgustful to repeat. 
" Are you weary," said the great man, bit- 
terly, " to receive benefits often from the same 
hand ?"* He offended the national conceit 
more by building, in the neighbourhood of his 
own residence, a temple to Diana, undtT the 
name of Aristobule, or ' Diana of the I. 
counsel ;' — thereby appearing to claim to him- 
self the merit of giving the best counsels. 

It is probable, however, that Themi-t> n ild 

liave conquered all party opposition, and that 
his high qualities would have more than coun' 
balanced his defects in the .pie, if 

he had still continued to lead the popular tide. 
But the time had come when the demagogue 
was outbid by an aristocrat — when the Ho 
nient he. no longer headed, left him behind, 
and the genius of an individual could no longer 
keep pace with the giant strides of an advancing 

* Plut in vit. Them. 


27 C) AT! I 

book XXII. The victory at Salami- was followed by 


a democratic result. That victory had been ob- 
i. tamed by the seamen, who were mostly of the 

lowest of the populace— tin? lowest of tin; po- 
pulace began then-fore to claim, in political 

equality, the reward of military service. And 
Aristotle, whose penetratuig intellect could not 

fail to notice the changes which an event 
glorious to Greece prodneed in Athens, ha- ad- 
duced a similar instance of chan 

when the mariners of that -tat. -. having, at 
a later period, eoinpieivd tin- Athenians, eon- 
vert. -d a mixed republic to a pure democracy. 
The destruction of houses and property by 
Mardonius — the temporary desertion by the Athe- 
nians of their native land — the common danger 
and the common glory, had broken down many 
of the old distinctions, and the spirit of the na- 
tion was already far more democratic than the 
constitution. Hitherto, qualifications of property 
were demanded for the holding of civil offices. 
But after the battle of Plataea, Aristides, the 
leader of the aristocratic party, proposed and car- 
ried the abolition of such qualifications, allowing 
to all citizens, with or without property, a share 
in the government, and ordaining that the archons 
should be chosen out of the whole body ; the 
form of investigation as to moral character was 


still indispensable. This change, great as it book 
was, appears, like all aristocratic reforms, to c „. 
have been a compromise* between concession I. 
and demand. And the prudent Ari>tid<«. yielded 
what was inevitable, to prevent tl; iter 

danger of resistance. It may be ever remarked, 
that the people value more a concession from 
the aristocratic party, than a boon from their 
own popular leaders. The last can never equal, 
and the first can so easily exceed, the public i 

XXIII. This decree, uniting the aristocratic 
with the more democratic party, gave Aii-tides 
and his friends an unequivocal ascendency over 
Themistocles, which, however, during the ab- 
sence of Aristides and Cimon, and the engross- 
ing excitement of events abroad, was not plainly 
visible for some year- ; and although, on his 
return to Athens, Aristides himself prudently 
forbore taking an active part against his ancient 
rival, he yet lent all the influence of his name 
and friendship to the now powerful and popular 
Cimon. The victories, the manners, the wealth, 
the birth, of the son of Miltiades, were supported 
by his talents and his ambition. It was obvious 
to himself and to his party, that, were Themis- 
tocles removed, Cimon would become the first 
citizen of Athens. 

* Plut. in \it Arist. 

278 ATM 


(II \1' 

book XXIV. Such were th< - that long %e-* 

cretly undermined, that at length openly Btorn 
i. the authority of the hero of Salamis ; tod 
this juncture we may conclude, that die ricei of 
liis character avenged themaelvet on the \ i it 
His duplicity and spirit <>}' intrigue, exercised on 
behalf of his country, it might be supposed, would 
hereafter be excite* -t it. Ami tin- pride, 

the ambition, the craft, that bad saved the people, 
might serve to create a deep 

Themjstocles was summoned to the ord< 
the ostracism, ami condemned by the majority 
h.< . i?i. of suffrages. Thus, like Aristides, not punished 
for offences, hut paying the honourable penalty 
of rising by genius to that state of einim i 
which threatens danger to the equality oi 

He departed from Athens, and chose hi 
fuge at Argos, whose hatred to Sparta, his 
deadliest foe, promised him the securest pro- 

XXV. Death soon afterwards removed Aris- 
tides from all competitorship with Cimon ; ac- 
cording to the most probable accounts he died 
at Athens ; and at the time of Plutarch his mo- 
nument was still to be seen at Phalerum. His 
countrymen, who, despite all plausible charges, 
were never ungrateful except where their liher- 



tief appeared emperilled, (whether rightly or 1U)() k 
erroneously our documents are too .-canty to (1)U , 
prove,; erected his monument at the public *• 
charge, portioned liis three daughter-, and 
awarded to his son Lysimachus, a grant of 0B6 
hundred minre of silver, a plantation of one 
hundred plethra* of land, and a pension ol * four 
drachmae a day (douhle the allowanee of an 
Athenian ambassador.) 

* About twenty-three EngKah acres. This was by no 
meami a despicable estate in the confined soil of An 

280 a i in 


POP) UBITY, and rou< \ of cimon n vxos ri \oits prom thk 


HTfTltl Wti MUSK 

book I. The military abilities and early habits of 
Cimon, naturally conspired with j*a-r Buccefi to 
n. direct his ambition rather to warlike than to 
civil distinctions. But he was not inattentive 
to the arts which were necessary in a democratic 
state to secure and confirm his power. Suc- 
ceeding to one, once so beloved and ever so 
affable as Themistocles, he sought carefully to 
prevent all disadvantageous contrast. From the 
spoils of Byzantium and Sestos, he received a 
vast addition to his hereditary fortunes. And 
by the distribution of his treasures, he forestalled 
all envy at their amount. He threw open his 
gardens to the public, whether foreigners or 


citizens — he maintained a table to which men book 

i\ . 

of every rank freely resorted, though probably 
those only of his own tribe* — he was attended "• 
by a numerous train, who were ordered to give 
mantles to what citizen soever — aged and 1 11 — 
clad — they encountered ; and to relieve the ne- 
cessitous by alms delicately and secretly admi- 
nistered. By these artful devices, he rendered 
himself beloved, and concealed the odium of* his 
politics beneath the mask of his charities. For 
while he courted the favour, he ad\anced not 
the wishes, of the people. He sided with the 
aristocratic party, and did not conceal his at- 
tachment to the oligarchy of Sparta. Be sought 
to content the people with himself, in order that 
be might the better prevent discontent with 
their position. Rut it may be doubted whether 
Cimon did not, far more than any of his prede- 
cessors, increase the dangeri of a de m oc ra cy, by 
vulgarizing its spirit. The system of general 

alms and open tables, had the effect that the 
abuses of the Poor Lawsj" have had with us. 
It accustomed the native poor to the habits of 

* Aristot. apud Plut. vit. Cim. 

f Produced equally by the anti-j>opular party on popular 
pretexts. It was under the sanction of Mr. Pitt, that the 
prostitution of charity to the able-bodied was effected in 


BOOK indolent pauper-, .'iiid what at first was chat 

soon took the aspect of a right. Hence much 
< ii \ i' 

ii. of the lazy turbulence, and much of that licen- 
tious spirit o! exaction iVoni tin- wealthy, that 
in a succeeding age characterized tin- mohf 
Athena* So does Uial fertile generosity , common 
to an anti-popular party, when it affects kiml- 

ftafJ in arder to prevent cone. --ion, ultimately 
operate auain-t its own SOCret -ehniie-. .And 80 
much less really dangerOOS is it to exalt, by i 
stitutional enactments, the authority of a people, 

than to pamper, by the electioneering cajol 
of a selfish amhition, the prejudices which thus 
settle into vices, or the momentary 
thus fixed into permanent demands. 

II. While the arts or manners of Cimon 
conciliated the favour, his integrity won the 
esteem, of the people. In Ari slides he found 
the example, not more of his aristocratic politics 
than of his lofty honour. A deserter from P< 
having arrived at Athens with great treasure, 
and being harassed by informers, sought the 
protection of Cimon, by gifts of money. 

" Would you have me," said the Athenian, 
smiling, " your mercenary, or your friend '." 

" My friend!" replied the Barbarian. 

" Then take back your gifts."* 

* Plut. in vit. Cim. 


III. In the meanwhile the new ascendency hook 
of Athens was already endangered. The Ca- .. 
rystians in the neighbouring isle of Eubcea B. 
openly defied her fleet, and many of the con- 
federate states, seeing themselves delivered from 
all immediate dread of another invasion of the 
Medes, began to cease contributions both to the 
Athenian navy and the common treasury. For 
a danger not imminent, service became burthen- 
some, and taxation odious. And already some 
well-founded jealousy of the ambition of Athen- 
increased the reluctance to augment her power. 
Naxos was the first island that revolted from 
the conditions of the League, and thither Ciinon, 
having reduced the Carvstians, led a fleet nu- 
merous and well-equipped. 

Whatever the secret views of Ciinon for the 
aggrandizement of his country, he could not 
but feel himself impelled by his own genial 
and the popular expectation, not lightly to 
forego that empire of the sea, rendered to A 1 1 i • 
by the profound policy of Themistoeles and the 
fortunate prudence of Aristides ; and every 
motive of Grecian, as well as Athenian, policy 
justified the subjugation of the revolters — an 
evident truth in the science of state policy, but 
one somewhat hastily lost Bight of by those histo- 
rians, who, in the subsequent and unlooked-for re- 


book suits, forgot the necessity ofthc earlier enterpi 

Greece had voluntarily entrusted toAthem the 


UL maritime command of the confederate bi 

To her, Greece must consequently look for no 
diminution of the national retoureei committed 
to her charge ; to her, thai thr condition! of 1 1 j * - 
league were fulfilled, and the common safet 
(ireece ensured. Commander of the force*, iha 
waj answerable for the deserters. \or, altlx 
Persia at present remained tranquil ami inert, 

could the confederatei !»»• considered safe from 

her revenge. No compact of peace had I 
procured. The more than suspected intrig 
of Xerxes with Pausanias, were sufficient pi 
that the Great King did not yet despair of the 
conquest of Greece. And the peril previously 
incurred in the want of union amongst the 
\cral states, was a solemn warning not to 
the advantages of that league, so tardily and so 
laboriously cemented. Without great dishonour, 
and without great imprudence, Athens could 
not forego the control with which she had I 
invested ; if it were her's to provide the means, 
it was her's to punish the defaulters ; and her 
duty to Greece thus decorously and justly sus- 
tained her ambition for herself. 

IV. And now it is necessary to return to the 
fortunes of Pausanias, involving in their fall 


the ruin of one of far loftier virtues and more BOOK 

unequivocal renown. The reeal of Faustinas, 

^ . CHAP. 

the fine inflicted upon him, his narrow escape II« 

from a heavier sentence, did not suffice to draw 
him, intoxicated as he was with his hopes and 
passions, from his bold and perilous intrigUN 
It is not improbable that his mind was al- 
ready tainted with a certain insanity.* And it 
is a curious physiological fact, that the unnatural 
constraints of Sparta, when acting on Strong 
passions and fervent imaginations, seem, not un- 
often, to have produced a species of madness. 
An anecdote is recorded,! which, though ro- 
mantic, is not perhaps wholly fabulous, and 
which invests with an interest yet more dra- 
matic, the fate of the conqueror of Plata*. 

At Byzantium, runs the storv, he became 
passionately enamoured of a young virgin named 
Cleonice. Awed by his power and his stern- 
ness, the parents yielded her to his will. The 
modesty of the maiden made her stipulate that 
the room might be in total darkness when she 
stole to his embraces. But unhappily, on en- 
tering, she stumbled against the light, and the 
Spartan, asleep at the time, imagined, in the 
confusion of his sudden waking, that the noise 

* His father's brother, Cleomenes, died raving mad, as we 
have already seen. There was therefore insanity in the family. 
t Plut. in vit. Cim. Pausanias, lib. iii. c. 17. 

\ I III A 

POOR WW occasioned by one of his numerous enen 

king lii- chamber with the intent to assa-^inate 

( ' 1 1 \ I' 

ii. him. Seizing the Peraian cimiter 4 that lay beside 
him, In- plunged it in the bread of the intruder, 

and the object of his passion fell i\vAy\ ;it hi- feeT. 

" From that hour," says the biographer, " he 

could re-t no more !" A B] haunted his 

lights- the \oiee of the nurd iri pro- 

elaimed doom to lii» < -ar. It ii ad id if 

we extend onr belief farther, we must attri- 
bute the apparition to the skill of the j * i i ■ 
that, still tortured by the ghost of Cleonice, he 
applied to those celebrated Decromancers who, 

at lleraclea,| -ummoned by IN the 

manes of the dead, and hy their aid invoked tin- 
spirit he sought to appease. The sliadi 
Cleonice appeared and told him, " that 
after his return to Sparta he would be delivered 
from all his troubles." % 

Such was the legend repeated, as Plutarch 
tells us, by many historians ; the deed itself 
probable, and conscience, even without necro- 
mancy, might supply the spectre. 

V. Whether or not this story have any foun- 
dation in fact, the conduct of Pausanias seems 

* Pausanias, lib. iii. c. 17. 

f Phigalea, according to Pausanias. 

\ Plut. in vit. Cim. 


.it least to have partaken of that inconsiden <>k 

. . . . IN • 

recklessness which, in the ancient superstition, 

' ' CRAP. 

preceded the vengeance of the gods. After hk It 

trial, he had returned to Byzantium, without the 
sent of the Spartan government. Driven tlienee 
hy the resentment of the Athenians,* he repaired 
not to Sparta, hut to Colonae, in Asia-Minor, 
and in the vicinity of the ancient Trov ; and 
there he renewed his negotiations with the Per- 
sian king. Acquainted with his designs, the 
vigilant Ephors despatched to him a herald with 
the famous scytale. This \\;i- an instrument 
peculiar to the Spartans. To every general, or 
admiral, along black staff was entrusted; the 

magistrates kept another exactly similar. When 
they had any communication to make, they 
wrote it on a roll of parchment, applied it to 

their own stall*, fold upon fold— then cutting it 
oil' dismissed it 10 the chief. The charac 
were so written that they were OOOroeed and un- 
intelligible until fastened to tin; stick, and thus 
could only he construed hy the person for whose 
eye they were intended, and to whose care the 
staff was confided. 

The communication Pausanias now received 
was indeed stern and laconic. " Stay," it -aid, 
" behind the herald, and war is proclaimed 
against you by the Spartans." 
* Thucyd. lib. i. 


iooi ( )n receiving this solemn order, even 1 1 1 * - 
iv. . . 

imperious spirit of Pausanias did not venture 
chap. J ' 

". to disobey. Like Venice, whose harsh, loPf 
tuoiis, btri energetic policy, her oligarchy ii 

many respects resembled, Sparta possessed I 
moral and ni\>t<i |0U1 power OVCT the fi- 
ller sons. Ili^ late held him in her grasp, and, 
confident of acquittal, instead of flyin 
the Regent hurried to bit doom, assured that by 

the help of gold, lie eonld baffle any accu-atioii. 

Hi- expretation- were so far well -founded, that, 
although, despite his rank a- regent of the king- 
dom and guardian of the king, lie iras thrown 
into prison by the Epliors, he succeeded, by his 
intrigues and influence, in procuring hi- en- 
largement : and boldly challenging his accu- 
he offered to submit to trial. 

The government, however, was slow to act. 
The proud caution of the Spartans v 
loth to bring scandal on their homo by public- 
proceedings against any freeborn citizen — how 
much more against the uncle of their monarch 
and the hero of their armies ! His power, his 
talents, his imperious character, awed alike pri- 
vate enmity and public distrust. But his haughty 
disdain of their rigid laws, and his continued affec- 
tation of the barbarian pomp, kept the government 
vigilant ; and though released from prison, the 


stern Ephors were his sentinels. The restless BOOK 
and discontented mind of the- expectant son-in- 
law of Xerxes, could not relinquish its daring "• 
schemes. And the regent of Sparta entered 
into a conspiracy, on which it were much 
be desired, that our information were more 

VI. Perhaps no class of men in ancient tim 
excite a more painful and profound interest than 

the Helots of Sparta. Though, as we have lie- 
fore seen, we must reject all rhetorical es 
rations of the savage cruelty to which they p 
subjected, we know, at least, that their servi- 
tude was the hardest, imposed by any of the 

Grecian state- upon their .-lave-," and that the 
iron soldiery of Sparta were exposed td con- 
stant and imminent peril horn their revolts — a 
proof that the curse of their bondage had passed 
beyond the degree which subdues the spirit to 

that which arouses, and that neither the liahit 
of years, nor the swords of the fiercest warrr 
nor the spie> of the keenest government, of 
Greece, had been able utterly to extirpate from 
human hearts that law of nature which, when 
injury passes an allotted, yet rarely visihlc, i 
trenie, converts suffering to resistance. 

Scattered, in large numbers, throughout the 
* Plato, leg. \ i. 


290 uiiias: 

book ragged territoriei of Laconia,— separated from 
the presence, bu1 not the watch of their masl 
ii- these singular serfi never abandoned the hope 
of liberty. < tften preesed into battle t<> aid their 
masters, they acquired the courage to oppose 
them. Pierce, gallon, and rindictire, th< 

as droves of wild cattle, left to range at will, till 
wanted for thr burthen or the knife,— not difli- 

cult to butcher, but impossible to tame. 

We have seen that a considerable onmh 
these helota had fought as light-armed trooj 
Plataea ; and tin- common danger and tin- com- 
mon glory had united the slaves of the army 
with the chief. Entering into somewhat of the 

-perate and revengeful ambition that, under 
a similar constitution, animated Marino Faliero, 
Pausania- sought, by means of the en-laved 
multitude, to deliver himself from the thraldom 
of the oligarchy, which held prince ami -lave 
alike in subjection. He tampered with the 
helots, and secretly promised them the ri 
and liberties of citizens of Sparta, if they would 
co-operate with his projects, and revolt at his 

Slaves are never w ithout traitors ; and the 
Ephors learnt the premeditated revolution from 
helots themselves. "Still,* slow and wary, those 
subtle and haughty magistrates suspended the 



blow — it was not without the fullest proof book 

i 1V - 

that a royal Spartan was to be condemned on 

the word of helots : they continued their vi- n. 

gilance — they obtained the proof they I 


VII. Argilius, a Spartan, with whom Peasant 

had once formed the vicious connexion common 

to the Doric tribes, and who was deep in hi* 

confidence, was entrusted by the regent with 

letters to Artabazus. ArglHua called to mind 

that none entrusted with a similar mission had 

returned. He broke open the leak, and 

read what his fears foreboded, that on his arrival 
at the satrap's court, the -ilenee of the in 

rer was to be purchased by his death. Be 

carried the packet to the Ephors. That dark 
ami plotting council were resolved \et more en- 
tirely to entangle their guilty victim, and out 
of his own mouth to extract hlfl secret ; thc\ 
therefore ordered Argilius to take refug 
suppliant in the sanctuary of the temple of 

nine on Mount Tenants. \\ ithin the 
(red confines was contrived ■ cell, which, by a 
double partition, admitted some of the Ephors, 
who, there concealed, might witness all that 

Intelligence was soon brought to Pausanias, 
that, instead of proceeding to Artabazus, his 

i -J 



book confidant had t:ik<n refug luppliant, in 

tin: temple of Neptune. Alarmed and anxious, 
ii- fin- regent hastened to the sanctuar \ giliui 
informed him thai be bad read the letters, and 
reproached him bitterly with hii treason to him- 
self. Pausanias, cbnfouUded and overcome bj 
the perils which surrounded him, confessed his 
guilt; spoke anreservedlj of the contents of tba 
letter, implored the pardon of Argilius, and pro- 
mised him safety and wealth if be would I 

tin- sanctuary and pro ce ed on the mission. 

The Ephors, from their hiding-place, h 


On the departure of Panaanias from the sane* 

tuarv, his doom was fixed. But amongst 
more public causes of the previous delay of jus- 
tice, we must include the friendship of some 

of the Ephors, which Pausaniaa had won or pur- 
chased. It was the moment fixed for his at 
Puusanias, in the strc alone and on foot. 

He beheld the Ephors approaching him. \ 
signal from one warned him of his dan_ 
He turned — he fled. The temple of Min< 
Chalcioecus at hand proffered a sanctuary — he 
gained the sacred confines, and entered a small 
house hard by the temple. The Ephors — the 
officers — the crowd, pursued ; they surrounded 
the refuge, from which it was impious to drag 


the criminal. Resolved on his death, they re- hook 
moved the roof — blocked up the entrances — (and 

( 'II A I' 

if we may credit the anecdote, that violating II. 
human — was characteristic of Spartan — na- 
ture, his mother, a crone of greet age,* sug- 
gested the means of punishment, by placii 
with her own hand, a stone at the threshold) — 
and setting a guard around, left the conqueror 
of MardoniuS to die of famine. When he I 
at his last gasp, unwilling to profane the sanc- 
tuary by his actual death, they bore him out 
into the open air, which he only breathed to i 
pire.f His corpse, which some of the fieri 
Spartans at first intended to east in the place of 
burial for malefactors, iras afterwards buried in 
the neighbourhood of the temple. And thtU 
ended the glory and the Climes — the grasping 
ambition and the luxurious ostentation — of the 
hold Spartan, who hist scorned, and then imi- 
tated, the effeminacies of the Persian he sub- 

\ III. Amidst the documents of which the 

* Nop. in vit. Pans. 

t Pau.sanias observes that his renowned namoaU m the 
only suppliant taking refuge at the *anctuary of Minerva 
Chalcioecus, who did not obtain the divine protection, and 
this because he could never purify himself of the murder of 
C Icon ice. 


•ok Bphors possessed themselves after th<- deatl 

Pausanias, was a correspondence with Tin 
chap. . ' 

ii. tocles, tlicn residing in the rival and inimical 
te of Argot. V« t \ indi ainst thai bi 

the Spartan government despatched ■mhanadmi 
to Athena, aoenaing him of ■ share in the con- 
spiracy of Pauaanias with the Medes. It se< 
that ^bemistoclea did no4 di pon- 

deuce with Pausanias, nor affect an «il »-<jlut<; 
ignorance of his schemes, I > 1 1 1 he firmly denied 
by letter, his only mode of* defence, all ap- 
proval and all participation of the latter. 
is there any proof, nor any jnst ground of suspi- 
cion, that he was a party to the betrayal of 
Greece. It was consistent, indeed, with his 
;i-tute character, to plot, to manoeuvre, to in- 
. trigue, but for great arid not paltry ends. JH 
possessing himself of the secret, he possessed 
himself of the power, of Pausanias ; and that 
intelligence might perhaps have enabled him to 
frustrate the Spartan's treason in the hour of actual 
danger to Greece. It is possible, that so fa; 
Sparta alone w r as concerned, the Athenian felt 
Hale repugnance to any revolution, or any 
peril confined to a state whose councils it had 
been the object of his life to baffle, and whose 
power it was the manifest interest of his na- 
tive city to impair. He might have looked 


with complacency on the intrigues which the re- hook 
gent wag carrying on against the Spartan govern- 
ment, and which threatened to shake that Doric U. 
constitution to its centre. But nothing, either 
in the witness of history, or in the character or 
conduct of a man profoundly patriotic, even in 
his vices, favours the notion that he conni\ 
at the schemes, which implicated] with tit 
cian, the Athenian welfare. Pausanias, far lees 
able, was probably his tool. By an insight into his 
projects, Themistocles might have calculated on 
the restoration of his own power. To weaken the 
Spartan influence, was to weaken his own ene- 
mies at Athens ; to break up the Spartan con- 
stitution, was to leave Athena herself without i 
rival. And if, from the revolt of the hel< 
Pausanias >hould proceed to an act! _ue 

with the Persians, Themistocles knew enough 
of Athens and of Greece, to foresee that it \ 
to the victor of Salamis, and the founder of the 
Grecian navy, that all eves would be directed. 
Such seem the most probable views which would 
have been opened to the exile by the communi- 
cations of Pausanias. If so, they were necessa- 
rily too subtle for the crowd to penetrate or un- 
derstand. The Athenians heard only the accu- 
sations of the Spartans ; they saw only the trea- 
son of Pausanias ; they learnt only that Themis- 

296 \jiii.n 

book toclei bad been the correspondent of the traitor. 

Already suspicion niu-. whose deep and 

"■ intricate wiles they were seldom aide to fathom, 

and trembling at the seeming danger they had 

;ijM(l, it W8S natural enough tliat die Athe- 
nians should accede to tin- demand- of the am- 

]),{> An Athenian, joined with ■ I 

dmnoniaa troop, wai ordered to seize Themis- 
tocles wherever he should be found. Appri 
of hii danger, be hastily quitted the Pelopoav 
aesus, and took refuge at Corcyra, Pear al the 
vengeance at once of Athene and of Sparta in- 
duced the Corcyreans t<» deny tin r he 
sought, but they honourably transported him to 
the opposite continent. His route was dil 
vercd — his pursuers pretted upon him. He had 
entered the country of Admetus, king of the Mo- 
lossians, from whose resentment he had e\ 
thing to dread. For he had persuaded the 
Athenians to reject the alliance once sought by 
that monarch, and Admetus had vowed ven- 

Thus situated, the fugitive formed a resolu- 
tion which a great mind only could have con- 
ceived, and which presents to us one of the most 
touching pictures in ancient history. He re- 
paired to the palace of Admetus himself. The 
prince was absent. He addressed his consort, 


and, advised by her, took the young child of book 

the royal pair in his hand, and sate down at 

J l ' CHAP. 

the hearth, — " Themistocles the SUPPLIANT !"* n. 
On the return of the prince he told his name, and 
bade him not wreak his vengeance on an exile, 
" To condemn me now," he said, " would be 
to take advantage of distress. Honour dictate! 
revenge only amongst equals upon equal terms. 
True that I opposed you once, but on a matter 
not of life, but of business or of interest. Now 
surrender me to my persecutors, and you de- 
prive me of the last refuge of life itself." 
IX. Admetus, much affected) bade him ria 

and assured him of protection. The pursu 
arrived ; but faithful to the guest who had 
BOUght his hearth, alter a form peculiarly 

solemn amongst the Moloesians, Admetus re* 

fused to give him up, and despatched him, 
guarded, to the sea-town of l'vdna, over an 
arduous and difficult mountain-road. The sea- 
town gained, he took ship, disguised and un- 
known to all the passengers, in a trading vessel, 
bound to Ionia. A storm arose — the vessel was 
driven from its course, and impelled right towards 
the Athenian fleet, that then under Cimon, his b.c. «*. 
bitterest foe, lay before the Isle of Naxos. 

Prompt and bold in his expedients, Themis- 
* Thucyd. lib. i. 136. 

298 atiii. 

tool toclei took aside the master of the vessel-^dis- 

i\ . 

covered himself: threatened, if betrayed, to in- 


ii. form against the master as one bribed to favour 
his escape; promised, if preserved, everlasting 
gratitude; ami urged, that the pi don was 

possible, it no one during th ere \>< r- 

mitted, on any pretext, to quit the r oaf el. 
r i'lie master of tie iron kepd out 

at lea I day and a night to windward of the 

fleet, and landed Themistoclet in isiel 

In the meanwhile, the friends ofThemisI 
had not been inactive in Athens. On the sop- 
posed discovery of his treason, such of his pro- 
perty as could fall into the hands of the govern- 
ment, was, as usual in such offences, confiscated 
to the public use ; the amount was variously 
estimated at eighty and a hundred talents.* 
But the greater part of his wealth — some from 
Athens, some from Argos — was secretly convt 
to him at Ephesus.f One faithful friend pro- 
cured the escape of his wife and children from 
Athens, to the court of Admetus, for which 
offence of affection, a single historian, Stesim- 
brotus, (whose statement even the credulous 
Plutarch questions, and proves to be contradic- 
tory with another assertion of the same author,) 
* Plut. in vit. Them. f Thucyd. lib. i. 137. 


has recorded that he was condemned to death *{!?* 

by Cimon. It is not upon such dubious cliro- (11U , 
nicies that we can suffer so great a stain on the J^ 
character of a man singularly humane.* 

X. As we have now for ever lost sight of 
Themistocles on the stage of Athenian politi 
the present is the most fitting opportunity to 
conclude the history of his wild and adven- 
turous career. 

Persecuted by the Spartans, abandoned \>\ 
his countrymen, excluded from the whole of 
Greece, no refuge remained to the man who had 
crushed the power of Persia, save the Persian 

court. The generous and high-spirited policy 
that characterized the Oriental Despotism toward- 
its foes, proffered him not only a safe, but a 
magnificent asylum. The Persian monarcl 

were ever ready to welcome the exiles of Greo 
and to conciliate those whom they had tailed to 
conquer. It was the fate of Themist< be 

saved by the enemies of his country. He had 
no alternative. The very accusation of con- 
nivance with the Medea drove him into their 

* Mr. Mitford, while doubting the fact, attempts, with 
his usual disingenuousness, to raise upon the very fact 
that he doubts, reproaches against the horrors of demoi ra- 
tical despotism. A strange practice for an historian to allow 
the premises to be false, and then to argue upon them as true! 

;{00 aiiii.s 

hook Under guidance of a Persian, Themiatoclea tra- 
versed the Asiatic continent ; and ere he reached 


ii. Susa, contrived to have a letter, that might pre* 
pare the way for him, delivered at the Persian 

COUrt. Hll letter ran -omeuhat thu-, if we mav 

aupposc that Thncydida ed the import, 

UlOUgfa lie undoubtedly t ; l - 1 J i ' H 1 1 •< 1 the -tvle.* 

" J, Themiatoclea, arho of all the I have 

inflicted the lerereal arounda upon your 

long as I was called l.\ fate t<> . the ima- 

aion of the Persians, now come to \<>n."' lie 

then nr-ed, on the other hand, the - he 

had rendered to Xerxes in hi- mcaaagCl after 
Salami's, relative; to the breaking of the brioi. 
assuming a credit to which he \\a- by no in 
entitled — and insisted that his generosity demand- 
ed a return.) " Able" (he proceeded u to per- 
form great services — persecuted by the Greeks 
for my friendship for you — I am near at ham!. 
Grant me only a year's respite, that 1 may then 
apprise you in person of the object of my journey 

f The brief letter to Artaxerxes, given by Thucydide*, 
(lib i. 137,) isas evidently the composition of Thucydides him- 
self, as is the celebrated oration which he puts into the mouth 
of Pericles. Each has the hard, rigid, and grasping style so 
peculiar to the historian, and to which no other Greek writer 
bears the slightest resemblance. But the matter may be 
more genuine than the diction. 


The bold and confident tone df Themisl ook 

struck the imagination of the young king, (Ar- 
taxerxes,) and lie returned a favourable reply. H. 
Themistocles consumed the year in the perfeel 
acquisition of the language, ami the Customs and 
manners of the country, if*' then Bought ami 
obtained an audience.* 

Able to converse with fluency, and without 
tlie medium of an interpreter, his natural abili- 
ty a found their level. He rose to instant favour. 
Never before had a stranger been so honoured, 
lie was admitted an easy aC€€M to the royal per- 
son — instructed in the learning of the Magi — 
and when he quitted the court it was to take 

possession of the government of three cities — 

Alyus, celebrated for it> provisions ; LampsaCUS, 
for its vineyard- ; and Magnesia, for the rich- 
ness of the -oil ; -<> that, according to the spirit 
and phraseology of oriental taxation, it was m>t 
unaptly said that they were awarded to him for 
meat, wine, and bread. 

XI, Thus affluent, and thus honoured, Thai 

* At th« time of his arrival in Asia, XerXMteWM to liasc 
been still living. But he appeared at Susa during the si Ml 
interval between the death of Xci m > and the formal M > 
sion of his son, when, by | NBguinarj revolution, yet to be 

narrated, Artabanus was raised to the head of the Persian 
empire: ere the year expired Artaxerxes was on the throne. 





mistocles passed ;it Magnesia tin- remainder of 
his days — the lime and method of lii- death 
uncertain ;-— whether cut off by natural i 
or, ai is otherwise related, 1 by ■ fate than which 
fiction itself could liavr invented nous m 
Buited to the consummation of liis romantic and 
it career. It is said, that when afterwards 
Egypt revolted, and that revoll was aided by the 
Athenians ;— when the Grecian navy sailed as 

* I relate this Istter tccotml of the death of Thenusta 

not only because Thucydides (though preferring th< 

!iot disdain to cite it; hut also, hecause it ii 
i'roiii the speech of Nicias, in the Knights of Aristophanes, 
1. 83, 84, that in the time of Pericles it was popularly be- 
lieved by the Athenians that Themistocles died by poison ; 
and from motives that rendered allusion to his death a po- 
pular vhiptriip. It is also clear that the death of Tin 
tocles appears to have reconciled him at once to the Athe- 
nians. The previous suspicions of his fidelity to Greece do 
not seem to have been kept alive even by the virulence of 
party; and it is natural to suppose that it most have been 
some act of his own, real or imagined, whieh tended to dis- 
prove the plausible accusations against him, and revive the 
general enthusiasm in his favour. What could that act have 
been but the last of his life, which, in the lines of Aristo- 
phanes referred to above, is cited as the ideal of a glorious 
death ! But if he died by poison the draught was 
bullock's blood — the deadly nature of which was one of the 
vulgar fables of the ancients. In some parts of the i 
tinent it is, in this da}', even used as medicine. 




far as Cilicia and Cyprus ; and Cimon upheld, BOOK 
without a rival, the new sovereignty of the seas; — 
when Artaxerxes resolved to oppose the growing U. 
power of a state, which, from the defensive, bad 
risen to the offending, power ; — Themiltoclai re- 
ceived a mandate to realize the vague promises he 
had given, and tocommence his operation- against 
Greece. Then, (if with Plutarch ire accept tins 
version of his fate,) neither resentment against 
the people he had deemed ungrateful, nor his 
-ent pomp, nor the fear of life, could induce 
the lord of Magnesia to dishonour his \> 
achievements,* and demolish his immortal 
trophies. Anxious only to die worthily — since 
to live as became him was no Ion able — 

he solemnly sacrificed to the gods — took 1< i 

of his friends, and finished his day- by DOM 

His monument long existed in the forum of 
Magnesia ; hut his hones are said, by his own 
desire, to have beep home hack, privately to 

Attica, and have rested in the beloved land 
that exiled him from her bosom. And this, 
his last request, s< ms touchingly to prove 
his loyalty to Athens, and to proclaim his 
pardon of her persecution. Certain it is, 
at hast, that however honoured in Persia, he 
never perpetrated one act against Greece ; and 
* Pint, in vit. Them. 

304 vi iii'.ns : 

book that if sullied by the suspicion of others, hi* 


fame was untarnished l>\ himself. Il<- died, 
ii. cording to Plutarch, in I. ty-mth year, 

leaving many children, and transmitting his 

name t<> a long posterity, who received from hi* 

memori tin- lioiiour- they could not have 

quired for themtel 

XII. The character of Themistoclei basaU 

ready in these pages unfolded itself profound, 

yet tortuous in policy -\a-t in conception — 

subtle, patient, yet prompt in action ; affable 

in manner, luit boastful, ostentatious, and dis- 
daining to conceal his consciousness of merit ; 
not brilliant in accomplishment, yet master not 
more of the Greek wiles than the Attic wit ■ 

sufficiently eloquent, but greater in deeds than 
words, and penetrating by an almost pn 
natural insight, at once the characters of men. 
and the sequences of events. Incomparably the 
greatest of his own times, and certainly not sur- 
passed by those who came after him. Pisistra- 
tus, Cimon, Pericles, Aristides himself, were of 
noble and privileged birth. Themistocles was 
the first, and, except Demosthenes, the greatest 
of those who rose from the ranks of the people, 
and he drew the people upward in his rise. 
His fame was the creation of his genius onlv. 
" What other man," (to paraphrase the unusual 


eloquence of Diodorus,) " could in the same 
time have placed Greece at the head of nations, 
Athens at the head of Greece, himself at the 
head of Athens?— in the most illustrious age 
the most illustrious man. Conducting to irai 
tie- citizens of a state in ruins, he defeated all 
the arms of Asia. He alone had the power 
to unite the most discordant materials, and to 
render danger itself salutary to hi- designs. 
Not more remarkable in war than pence — in 
the one he saved the liberties of Greece, in the 
other be created the eminence of Athen 

After him, the light of the heroic age seems 
to glimmer and to fade, and even Pericles him- 
self appears dwarfed and artificial beside that 
masculine and colossal intellect which broke 
into fragments the might of Persia, and baffled 
with a vigorous east- the gloonn Bagacity of 
Sparta. The statue of Theinistocles, existent 
six hundred years after his decease, exhibited 
to his countrymen an aspect as heroical as his 

We return to Cimon. 



* Plut. in vit. Them. 

VOL. H. 

.'{of; aim 



( imon-IMI'Uovkmi LTHBMI COLON1 ai iiii 


U \K UE1 WD i II \l! \< I BE <tl I'l.KH I.K8- PR08E( I I I 


book I. At the time in which Naxos refused the stipu- 
lated subsidies, and was, in consequence, besieged 
hi. by Cimon, that island was one of the most wealthy 
and populous of the confederate states. Ful- 
some time the Naxians gallantly resisted the 
besiegers ; but, at length reduced, they were 
subjected to heavier conditions than those previ- 
ously imposed upon them. No conqueror con- 
tents himself with acquiring the objects, some- 
times frivolous and often just, with which he 
commences hostilities. War inflames the pas- 
sions, and success the ambition. Cimon, at 
first anxious to secure the Grecian, was now led 
on to desire the increase of the Athenian, power. 


The Athenian fleet had subdued Naxos, andNaxos MjOI 
was rendered subject to Athens. Thil iM the BAM 
first of the free states which the growing r«-- m - 
public submitted to her yoke.* The precedent 
once set, as occasion tempted, the rest shared 
a similar fate. 

II. The reduction of Naxos was but the com- 
mencement of the victories of Cimon. In Asia 
Minor, there were many Grecian cities in which 
the Persian ascendency had never yet been 
shaken. Along the Carian coast, Cimon con- 
ducted his armament, and the terror it inspired 
sufficed to engage all the cities, originally 
Greek, to revolt from Persia ; those garrisoned 
by Persians he besieged and reduced. Victori- 
ous in Caria, he patted with equal ineetSS into 
Lycia,f augmenting his fleet and foi i he 

swept along. But the Persians, not inacti 
had now assembled a considerable force in Pam- 
phylia, ami lay encamped on the banks of the 
Eurymedon, whose waters, sufficiently wide, B.C. 
received their fleet. The expected reinforce- 
ment of eighty Phoenician vessels from Cyprus 
induced the Persians to delay]; actual hosti- 
lities. But Cimon, resolved to forestall the 
anticipated junction, sailed up the river, and 

* Thucyd. lib. i. f Diod. lib. xi. 

t Plut. in vit. Cim. 

X 1 


\ I I! 

book soon forced the Barbarian fleet, already much 

more Dumerout than hu own, into active en- 
< n ip. 
in. gageincnt. The Persians but feebh sup- 
ported the attack ; driven Dp the river, the 
crews deserted the ships, and hastened to join 

the army arrayed along the COest. Of the ships 

thus deserted, some were destroyed ; — and two 
hundred triremes, taken bj Cimon, yet more 

augmented his armament. But the P 
now advanced to thl of the shore, pre- 

sented a long and formidable array, and ( imon, 

with some anxiety, saw the danger he incurred 

in landing troops thready much hsjmted by tin- 
late action, while a considerable proportion of 
the hostile forces, far more numerous, wen fresh 
and uufatigued. The spirit of the men, and 
their elation at the late victory, bore down the 
fears of the general ; yet warm from the late 
action, he debarked his heavy-armed infantry, 
and with loud shouts the Athenian- rushed upon 
the foe. The contest was fierce— the slaughter 
great. Many of the noblest Athenians fell in 
the action. Victory at length declared in favour 
of Cimon ; the Persians were put to flight, and 
the Greeks remained masters of the battle and 
the booty — the last considerable. Thus, on the 
same day, the Athenians were victorious on both 
elements — an unprecedented glory, which led 


the rhetorical Plutarch to declare that Plataea book 
and Salamis were outshone. Posterity, more ( . |IAp 
discerning, estimates glory not by the greatness m- 
of the victory alone, but the justice of the can 
And even a skirmish, won by men struggling 
for liberty on their own shores, is more honoured 
than the proudest battle in which the con- 
querors are actuated by the desire of vengeance, 
or the lust of enterprise. 

III. To the trophies of this double victory 
were soon added those of athird, obtained over the 
eighty vessels of the Phoenicians off the coast of 
Cyprus. These signal achievements Spread the 
tenor of the Athenian arms on remote as on Gre- 
cian shores. Without adopting the exaggerated 
accounts of injudicious authors, as to the number 
of ships and prisoners,* it seems certain, at least, 
that the amount of the booty was sufficient, in 
some degree, to create in Athens a moral revo- 
lution — swelling: to a vast extent the fortunes of 
individuals, ami augmenting the general taste 
for pomp, for luxury, and for splendour, which 
soon afterwards rendered Athens the most mag- 
nificent of the Grecian states. 

The navy of Persia thus broken, her armies 

* Diod. (lib. xi.) reckons the number of prisoners at 
twenty thousand ! — These exaggerations sink glory into 

; * 10 ATHENS : 

■ooi routed, the. scene of action transferred to her 


own dominions— all designs against Greece « 
"i- laid aside. Retreating, as it wen-, more to the 
centre of* her rati domains, she left the Asiatic 
outskirts to the solitude, rather <»l* exhaustion 
than of peace. -v No troop*," boa-ted the I 
rhetoricians, u came within a day's journey, oa 
horseback, of the (irecian From the 

( Ihelidonian isles on the Pamphyliao < 
those* twin rocks at the entrance of the Euxine, 
between which the- sea, chafed by their rug{ 
base, roars anappeasably through it- misti of 

foam, no Persian galley was descried. Whether 
this was the cause of defeat, Of of acknowledged 

articles of peace, has been disputed. Hut 
will be seen hereafter, of the latter all historical 
evidence is wanting. 

In a subsequent expedition, Cimon, sailing 
from Athens with a small force, wrested the 
Thracian Chersonese from the Persians — an ex- 
ploit which restored to him bis own patrimony. 

IV. Cimon was now at the height of his fame 
and popularity. His share of the booty, and 
the recovery of the Chersonese, rendered him 
bv far the wealthiest citizen of Athens : and 
he continued to use his wealth to cement his 
power. His intercourse with other nations, his 

* The Cyaneae. Plin. vi. c. 12. Herod, iv. c. *5, &c. &c. 


familiarity with the oriental polish and magni- uook 

ficence, served to elevate his manners from their 

' § . CHAP. 

early rudeness, and to give splendour to his in. 

tastes. If he had spent his youth amongst the 
wild soldiers of Miltiades, the leisure of kk 
maturer years was cultivated by an intercour-r 
with sages and poets. His passion for the I 
which even in its excesses tends to refine and 
to soften, made his only vice. He was the friend 
of every genius, and every art ; and, the link 
between the lavish ostentation of Themist<»<! 
and the intellectual grace of Pericles, he con- 
ducted as it were the insensible transition from 
the age of warlike glory to that of civil pre- 
eminence. He may he said to have contributi d 
greatly to diffuse that atmosphere of poetry and 
of pleasure, which even the meanest of the free 
Athenians afterwards delighted to respire. He 
led the citizens more and more from the re- 
cesses of private life ; and carried out that social 
policy commenced by Pisistratus, according to 
which all individual habits beeame merged into 
one animated, complex, and excited public. 
Thus, himself gay and convivial, addicted to 
company, wine, and women, he encouraged 
shows and spectacles, and invested them with 
new magnificence ; he embellished the city with 
public buildings, and was the first to erect at 


A Till 

1\ . 

Athens those long rolonnadai beneath the 
ihade of* which, sheltered from the peei 
in. ' suns, that graceful people vers accustomed 
to assemble and con. I that 

universal home of the cituent, was planted 

hy him, \\ i 1 1 » the oriental planei , ami the 

groves of Academe, tin- immortal haunt of 
Plato, \\<iv oil work. That celebrated \ 
deo, associated with the grateful and bright 
remembrancei of ill which poetry can lead to 
wisdom, was, before the nine of Cimon, ■ 
waste and uncultivated spot. It was Id- hand 
that intersected it with fralks and alleys, and 
that poured through its green retreati the onuv 
mental waters, so refreshing in those climes, 
and not common in the dry Attic soil, which now 
meandered in living streams, and now sparkled 
into fountains. Besides these works to em- 
bellish, he formed others to fortify, the city. 
He completed the citadel, hitherto unguarded 
on the south side ; and it was from the Barbarian 
spoils deposited in the treasury, that the ex- 
penses of founding the Long Walls, afterwards 
completed, were defrayed. 

V. In his conduct towards the allies, the na- 
tural urbanity of Cimon served to conceal a policy 
deep-laid and grasping. The other Athenian 
generals were stern and punctilious in their de- 


mauds on the confederates; they required the BOOK 

allotted number of men, and, in default of the 

. . (H Al*. 

supply, increased the rigour of their exactions. in. 

Not so Cimon — from those whom the ordinary 
avocations of a peaceful life rendered averse to 
active service, he willingly accepted a pecuniary 
substitute, equivalent to the value of those -hips 
or soldiers they should have furnished. Th< 
sums, devoted indeed to the general tervi 
were yet appropriated to the uses of the Athe- 
nian navy ; thus the states, hitherto warlike, 
were artfully suffered to lapse into peaceful and 
luxurious pursuits; and the confederate! became 
at once, under the most lenient pn en- 

feebled and impoverished by the wery meana 

which Strengthened the martial spirit, and in- 
creased the fiscal resources, of the Athenian-. 
The tributaries found too late, when they ven- 
tured at revolt, that they had parted with the 
facilities of resistance.* 

In the meanwhile it was the object of Cimon 
to sustain the naval ardour and discipline of the 
Athenians; while the oar and the sword fell into 
disuse with the confederates, he kept the greater 
part of the citizens in constant rotation at mari- 
time exercise or enterprise — until experience 
and increasing power with one, indolence and 
* Thucyd. lib. i. 99. 

314 ATiirA 

booi gradual subjection with the other, desti 

in«'- the ancient equality in arms, made th<- 

CHAP. ' * 

in. Athenians masters, and their confed* ab- 


VI. According to the arise policy of the 
ancients, the Athenians never neglected a suit- 
able opportunity to colonize ; thus i xtending 
their dominion, while they drafted offth< 
of their population, as well as the more enterpris- 
ing spirits whom adventure tempted, or poverty 
aroused. The conquest of Eion had opened to 
the Athenians a new prospect <»t' aggrandise- 
ment, of which thcv were now prepared to seize 
the advantages. Not far from Eion, and on the 
banks of the Strymon, was a place called the 
Nine Ways, afterwards Amphipolis, and which, 
from its locality and maritime conveniences, 
seemed especially calculated for the site of* ■ 
new city. Thither ten thousand persons, some 
confederates, some Athenians, had been sent to 
establish a colony. The views of the Athenians 
were not, however, in this enterprise, bounded 
to its mere legitimate advantages. About the 
same time they carried on a dispute with the 
Thasians, relative to certain mines and places 
of trade on the opposite coasts of Thrace. The 
dispute was one of considerable nicety. The 

* Plut. in vit. Cim. 


Athenians having conquered Eion and the ad- ,, [ ,()K 
jacent territory, claimed the possession by right ( Im > 
of conquest. The Thasians, on the other hand, ^ 
had anciently possessed some of the mines and 
the monopoly of the commerce ; they had joined 
in the confederacy ; and asserting that the con- 
quest had been made, if by Athenian arms, for 
the federal good, they demanded that the 
ancient privileges should revert to them. The 
Athenian govern in ent was not disposed to sur- 
render a claim which proffered to avarice the 
temptation of mines of gold. The Thasians re- 
nounced the confederacy, and thus gare to the 
Athenians the very pretext for hostilities, which 
the weaker state should never permit to the more 
strong. While the colony proceeded to it- des- 
tination, part of the Athenian fleet, under Cimon, 
sailed to Thasos gained a victory by sea — 
landed on the island — and besieged the city. 

Meanwhile the new colonizers had become 
masters of the Nine Ways, having dislodged the 
Edonian Thracians, its previous habitants. But 
hostility following hostility, the colonists were 
eventually utterly routed, and cut off in a pitched 
battle at Drabescus, in Edonia, by the united 
forces of all the neiohbourino- Thracians. 

VII. The siege of Thasos still continued, b.C ks. 
and the besieged took, the precaution to -end 

316 aiiii \ 

BOOK tO Sparta far a — i*tanee. That sullen 

( Im , had long viewed with indignation the po 
In - of Athene; her yo irarrion clamoured 

iin-t the inert indifference with which ■ < 
lor ages so inferior to Sparta, had !»«■. n -nil. 
to gain the ascendency over Greece. In 
bad Themistoclei hem removed ; the Inezha 
tilde genini of the people had created ;i lecond 
Themistocles in Cimon. The Lacedssmoni 
glad of a pretext for <piarrel. courteously n-- 
(<i\rd the Tlia-ian embassadors, and promised 
to distract the Athenian forces by an irruption 
into Attica. They were actively prepared in 
concerting measures for this invasion, when 
sudden and complicated afflictions, now to be 
related, forced them to abandon their designs, 
and confine their attention to themselves. 

VIII. An earthquake, unprecedented in its 
violence, occurred in Sparta. In many places 
throughout Laconia, the rocky soil was rent 
asunder. From Mount Taygetus, which over- 
hung the city, and on which the women of La- 
cedaemon were wont to hold their bacchanalian 
orgies, huge fragments rolled into the suburbs 
The greater portion of the city was absolutely 
overthrown ; and it is said, probably with ex- 
aggeration, that only five houses wholly escaped 
the shock. This terrible calamity did not cease 







suddenly as it came ; its concussion- were re- 
peated ; it buried alike men and treasure : could 
we credit Diodorus, no less than twenty thou- 
sand persons perished in the shock. Thus de- 
populated, impoverished, and distressed, — the 
enemiei whom the cruelty of Sparta nursed with- 
in her bosom, resolved to seize the moment to 
cute their vengeance, and consummate her 
destruction. Under Pausanias, we have set m 
before, that the helots were already ripe for re- 
volt. The death of that fieree conspirator 
checked, but did not erusli, their designs of fre e - 
doin. Now was the moment, when Sparta lay 
in ruins — now wai the moment to realize their 
dreams. From field to field, from village to 
village, the newa of the earthquake bream. ■ the 
watchword of revolt. Uprose the helots — they 
armed themselves, they poured on— a wild and B.C. 4*4, 
gathering- and relentless multitude, resolved to 
slav by the wrath of man, all whom that of na- 
ture had yet spared. The earthquake that 
levelled Sparta, rent her chains ; nor did tin- 
shock create one chasm so dark and w ide as that 
between the master and the slave. 

It is one of the sublimest and most awful 
spectacles in history — that city in ruins — the 
earth still trembling — the grim and dauntless 
soldiery collected amidst piles of death and 


A I til 

book '*"»" ; and in Buch a time, and sucli n scene, the 

i \ 

mult it iifli- sensible, not of danger, 1 >u t of wrong, 


in. and rising, cot to Buccour, but to re 

thai, should have disarmed a feebler enmity, 

gii ing tire to tlnirs ; the dreadesl calamity t Inir 
blessing ■ -dismay their hope: tt arai n if the 

(treat Mother herself had summoned her children 
to vindicate the long-abused, the all inali- 
enable heritage derived from her; and the - 1 i i* 

of the ao£ry elements was but the announce* 
ment of an armed and solemn union bet? 
Nature and the Oppressed. 

IX. Fortunately for Sparta, the dan 

not altogether unforeseen. After the confusion 
and horror of the earthquake, and while Un- 
people, dispersed, were seeking to save their 
effects, Archidamus, who, four year- before, had 
succeeded to the throne of Lacedaemon, ordered 
the trumpets to sound as to arms. That won- 
derful superiority of man over matter whieli 
habit and discipline can effect, and which 
ever so visible amongst the Spartans, constituted 
their safety at that hour. Forsaking the care of 
their property, the Spartans seized their arms, 
flocked around their king, and drew up in dis- 
ciplined array. In her most imminent crisis, 
Sparta was thus saved. The helots approached, 
wild, disorderly, and tumultuous ; they came 


intent only to plunder and to slay ; they ex- "GOB 
pected to find scattered and affrighted foe* — rnA , 

they found a formidable army ; their tyrants n^ 
were still their lords. They saw, pau-ed. and 
fled, scattering themselves over the country — 
exciting all they met to rebellion, and, soon, 
joined with the Messenians, kindred to them 
by blood and ancient reminiscences erf heroic 
struggles, they seized that same lthonie which 
their hereditary Aristodeinus had before oc- 
cupied with unforgotten valour. This tl. 
fortified ; and occupying also the neighbouring 
lands, declared Open war Upon their Lord*, \- 
the Messenians were the more worths enemy, 
so the general insunveiion is known by the 
name of the Third nfmernilil War. 

\. While these events occurred in Sparta, 
Cimon, entrusting to others the continued siege 
of Thasos, had returned to Athens.* He found 
his popularity already >haken, and his power 
endangered. The democratic party had of late 
regained the influence it had lost on the exile 

* For the siege of Thasos lasted three years ; in the 
cond year we find Cimon marching to the relief of the 
Spartans; in fact, the liege of Th. not of suffi- 

cient importance to justify Cimon in a very prolonged absence 
from Athens. 


•*'J<> ATIII A 

boob of Themistocles. Pericles ion of Xanthipp 
nuAv (the accuser of Miltiade-, luul, during tin- 
last six years, insensibly risen into PCputati 

the house of Miltiadcs was fated to how b< 

the race of Xanthippus, Bad hereditary ops 
don ended in the <>1<1 bereditary results* Born 
of one of tin' Loftiest families of Athens, distin- 
guished l»\ the fame m the fortunes of bis father, 
\*lm had been linked with Aristidesin command 

of the Athenian fleet, and in whose name had 
been achieved the victory of Mycale, the young 
Pericles found betimes an easy opening to his 

brilliant genius, and hi- high ambition. lb- 
had nothing to contend against but his own ad- 
vantages. The beauty of his countenance, the 
sweetness of his voice, and the blandness of hi- 
address, reminded the oldest citizens of Pii 
tratus ; and this resemblance is said to 1 
excited against him a popular jealousy which he 
found it difficult to surmount. His youth was 
passed alternately in the camp and in the 
schools. He is the first of the great statesmen 
of his country who appears to have prepared 
himself for action by study ; Anaxagoras, Pytho- 
clides, and Damon, were his tutors, and he was 
early eminent in all the lettered accomplish- 
ments of his time. By degrees, accustoming 


the people to his appearance in public life, he BOOK 
became remarkable for an elaborate and empas- tmAm 
sioned eloquence, hitherto unknown. With hi* 1IL 
intellectual and meditative temperament all wai 
science ; his ardour in action regulated by lorn: 
forethought, his very words by deliberate pre- 
paration. Till his time, oratory in its prop 
sense, as a study and an art, wai uneultivated in 
Athens. Pisistratus is said to have beta natu- 
rally eloquent, and the vigorous mind of The- 
mistocles imparted at once persuasion and force 
to his counsels. But Pericles, aware of all 
the advantages to be gained by words, embel- 
lished words with every artitiee that his imagi- 
nation could suggest. His speeches were often 
written compositions, and the novel dazzle of 
their diction, and that consecutive logic which 
preparation alone can impart to language, became 
irresistible to a People that had itself beeome a 
Pericles. Universal civilisation, universal poetrv, 
had rendered the audience susceptible and fasti- 
dious ; they could appreciate the ornate and 
philosophical harangues of Pericles ; and, the 
first to mirror to themselves the intellectual 
improvements they had made, the first to re- 
present the grace and enlightenment, as The- 
mistocles had been the first to represent the 
daring and enterprise, of his time, the son of 

VOL. ii. Y 


322 \ i in \s : 

BOOK \;uitlii|)|)iis Ih"j;iii already to eclipse thai ' 

rim . Cimon, whose qualitiei prepared tli" iray tor 


XI. Wo must not Ml ppOtC ilmt in tin- 

co n t e sti between the aristocratic and popular 

parties, the aristocrat were alwayi aa one 
•ide. Such a division i- never to be aaan in 
free constitutione. There is alwa suffi- 

cient party of the noblee whom conviction, 

ambition, or hereditary predilections, will 
place at the head of the Popular Movement ; 
and it is by members of the privileged order 
that the order itself is weakened. Athena ifl 
this respect, therefore, resembled England, 
and, as now in the latter state, so then at 
Athens, it was often the proudest, the wealthiest, 
the most high-born of the aristocrat- that g 
dignity and success to the progress of demo- 
cratic opinion. There too, the vehemence of 
party frequently rendered politics an hereditary 
heir-loom ; intermarriages kept together men of 
similar factions ; and the memory of those who 
had been the martyrs or the heroes of a cause 
mingled with the creed of their descendants. 
Thus it was as natural that one of the race of 
that Clisthenes who had expelled the Pisistra- 
tidae, and popularized the constitution, should 
embrace the more liberal side, as that a Russell 



should follow out, in one age, the principles book 


for which his ancestor perished in another. So 
do our forefathers become sponsors for ourselves. IVL 
The mother of Pericles was the descendant of 
Clisthenes, and though Xanthippus himself 
was of the same party as Aristides, we may 
doubt, by his prosecution of Miltiades, as well 
as by his connexion with the Alcmaeonids, whe- 
ther he ever cordially co-operated with tin- 
views and the ambition of Cimon. However 
this be, his brilliant son cast himself at once 
into the arms of the more popular faction, and 
opposed with all his energy the aristocratic pre- 
dilections of Cimon. Not yet, however, able 
to assume the lead to which he aspired, (for it 
had now become a matter of time as well as 
intellect to rise,) he ranged himself under Ephi- 
altes, a personage of whom history gives us too 
scanty details, although he enjoyed considerable 
influence, increased by his avowed jealousy 
of the Spartans and his own unimpeachable in- 

XII. It is noticeable, that men who be- 
come the leaders of the public, less by the spur 
of passion, than by previous study and conscious 
talent — men whom thought and letters prepare 
for enterprise — are rarely eager to advance them- 


324 \ j ii i;ns : 

BOOK selves too soon. Makhig politics a science, they 

are even fastidiously alive to tin: qualities and 

CHAP. • ' 

in. the experience demanded for their 

very self-esteem renderi them seemingly mo- 
dest ; they rely upon time and upon occasion ; 

and, juislx d forward rather by eirenin-t;mee 

than their own exertions, it is long before their 
ambition and their resonrces are follj developed. 
Despite all his advantages, the rise of Peri< 

was gradual. 

On the return of Cimon, the popular | 
deemed itself sufficiently strong to manifest it- 
opposition. The expedition to ThaSOS had not 
been attended with results so glorious as to sa- 
tisfy a people pampered by a series of triumphs. 
Cimon was deemed culpable for not baring 
taken advantage of the access into Macedonia, 
and added that country to the Athenian empire. 
He was even suspected and accused of receiving 
bribes from Alexander, the king of Macedon. 
Pericles* is said to have taken at first an active 
part in this prosecution ; but when the cause 
came on, whether moved by the instances of 
Cimon 's sister, or made aware of the injustice of 
the accusation, he conducted himself favourablv 
towards the accused. Cimon himself treated the 

* Plut. in vit. Cim. 


charges with a calm disdain ; the result was hook 
worthy of Athens and himself. He was honour- ' 

" t II A r. 

ably acquitted. IIL 

XIII. Scarce was this impeachment over, 
when a Spartan ambassador arrived at AthoM 
to implore her assistance against the helots ; the 
request produced a vehement discussion. 

Ephialtea strongly opposed the proposition lb 
assist a city, sometimes openly, always heartily, 
inimical to Athens. " Much better," he con- 
tended, " to Buffer her pride to be humbled, 
and her powers of mischief to be impaired." 
Ever supporting, and supported by, the Lace- 
da-nionian party, whether at home or abroad, 
Cimon, on the other hand, maintained the ne- 
cessity of marching to the relief of Sparta. 
" Do not," he said, almost sublimely — and his 
words are reported to have produced a consider- 
able impression on that susceptible assembly— 
" do not suffer Greece to be mutilated, nor 
deprive Athens of her companion I" 

The more generous and magnanimous counsel 
prevailed with a generous and magnanimous 
people ; and Cimon was sent to the aid of 
Sparta, at the head of a sufficient force. It may 
be observed, as a sign of the political morality of 
the time, that the wrongs of the helots appear 
to have been forgotten. But such is the curse of 



book slavery, thai ii unfits its victims to b 

cept by preparations and degrees. And civih- 

iii. sation, humanity, ami social order, arc often 
enlisted on the wrong side, in behalf of tint op- 
pressors, from the licence and barbarity natural 
to the victories of tin- opprasjstd. A conflict be- 
tween the negroes and the planters, in modem 

times, may not be ananalogOOS t<» that of the 
helots and Spartans; and it i> often a fatal ne- 
cessity to extirpate the ver\ men we ha\e mad- 
dened, by our own cruelties, to the M ss of 

It would appear, that during the revolt of the 

helots and Messenians, which lasted ten year-, 

the Athenians, under Cimon, marched twice* 

to the aid of the Spartans. In the fir-t they 

h. c. i6i. probably drove the scattered insurgents into the 

n.c. 46i. city of Ithome ; in the second they besieged the 

b.c. 463. city. In the interval Thasos surrendered : the 

inhabitants were compelled to level their walls, 

to give up their shipping, to pay the arrear of 

tribute, to defray the impost punctually in future, 

and to resign all claims on the continent and the 


XIV. Thus did the Athenians establish their 
footing on the Thracian continent, and obtain the 
possession of the golden mines, which they mis- 

* Plut. in vit. Cim. 


took for wealth. In the second expedition of the book 

Athenians, the long-cherished jealousy lift ween 

to J J CHAP. 

themselves and the Spartans could no longer be DL 
smothered. The former were applied to especially 
from their skill in sieges, and their very science 
galled perhaps the pride of the martial Spartan-. 
While, as the true art of war was still so little un- 
derstood, that even the Athenians were unable to 
carry the town by assault, and compelled to sub- 
mit to the tedious operations of a blockade, th< 
was ample leisure for those feuds, which the un- 
congenial habits and long rivalry of the two na- 
tions necessarily produced. Proud of their Dorian 
name, the Spartans looked on the Ionic race of 
Athens as aliens. Severe in their oligarchic 
discipline, they regarded the Athenian Deinus 
as innovators ; and, in the valour itself of their 
allies, they detected a daring and ivstless energy 
which, if serviceable now, might easilv be ren- 
dered dangerous hereafter. They even sus- 
pected the Athenians of tampering with the 
helots — led, it may be, to that distrust by the 
contrast, which they were likely to misinterpret, 
between their own severity and the Athenian 
mildness towards the servile part of their several 
populations, and also by the existence of a 
powerful party at Athens, which had opposed 
the assistance Cimon afforded. With their 

All I 

hook usual tranquil and wary policy, the Sp 
Korernment attempted to conceal their real f 

(II A 1'. 

111. sad simply alleging tlu-v had do farther need of 
their assistance, dismissed the Athenians. Hut 

that people, constitutionally irritable, perci 
i 1 1 !_z.- that, despite this hollow pretext, the other 
allies, including the obnoziooJ .i rere 

retained, received their dismissal a- an insult. 

Thinking, justly, that tiny had merited a nobler 
confidence from the Spartan-, tiny gave \\;e 
their first resentment, and disregarding the 
league existing yet between themselTei and 

Sparta, against the Mede— the form of which 
had survived the spirit — they entered into an 
alliance with the Argires, hereditary enemi 

Sparta, and in that alliance the Aleuads of 
Thessaly were included. 

XV. The obtaining of these decrees by the 
popular party, was the prelude to the fall of 
Cimon. The talents of that great man were far 
more eminent in war than peace ; and despite 
his real or affected liberality of demeanour, he 
wanted either the faculty to suit the time, or 
the art to conceal his deficiencies. Raised to 
eminence by Spartan favour, he had ever too 
boldly and too imprudently espoused the Spartan 
cause. At first, when the Athenians obtained their 
naval ascendency — and it was necessary to con- 



ciliate Sparta— the partiality with which Cimon book 
was regarded by that state was his recommenda- 
tion; now when, no longer to be conciliated, Sparta in. 
was to be dreaded and opposed, it became his ruin. 
It had long been his custom to laud the Spar- 
tans at the expense of the Athenians, and to 
hold out their manners as an example to the 
admiration of his countrymen. It was a favourite 
mode of reproof With him — " The Spartans would 
not have done this." It was even remembered 
against him that he had called his son Laeeda- 
monilll. These predilections had of late rankled 
in the popular mind; and now, when tin- Athe- 
nian force had been contumeliouslv dismissed, 
it was impossible to forget that Cimon had ob- 
tained the decree of the relief, and that the 
mortification which resulted from it was the 
effect of his counsels. 

Public spirit ran high against the Spartans, 
and at the head of the Spartan faction in Athena 
stood Cimon. 

XVI, But at this time, other events, still more 
intimately connected with Athenian politi 
conspired to weaken the authority of this able 
general. Those constitutional reforms, which 
are in reality revolutions under a milder name, 
were now sweeping away the last wrecks of 
whatever of the old aristocratic system was still 
left to the Athenian commonwealth. 

: !•"*<> \iin;ns: 

mook \\ ,. | i; ,vc seen tlint tin- de mocra tic party bad 

()|u , increased iii pOWtf by tin* decree of .\ri-ti<! 

nil which opened all offieei fee all rank This, 

as yet, was productive less of actual than of 
nor*] effects. The libera] opinion! poaa 
by a pari of the aristocracy, and the legitimate 
influence which in all ootmtriei belongi f«» pro- 
perty and high deatant— (greatest indeed w 
the countries are most free) — Becared, at a 
neral rule, the principal situations in i 
to rank and wealth. Hut the inmnl effecl of the 
decree was to I h vate the lower classes with a 
sense of their own power and dignity, and every 
victory achieved over a foreign foe, gave new 
authority to the people, whose voices elected the 
leader — whose right arms won the battle. 

The constitution, previous to Solon, was an 
oligarchy of birth. Solon rendered it an 
tocracy of property. Clisthenes widened its 
basis from property to population ; — as we have 
already seen, it was, in all probability, Clis- 
thenes also who weakened the more illicit and 
oppressive influences of wealth, by establishing 
the ballot or secret suffrage, instead of the open 
voting, which was common in the time of Solon. 
It is the necessary constitution of society, that 
when one class obtains power, the ancient checks 
to that power require remodelling. The Areopagus 


was designed by Solon as the aristocratic balance book 
to the popular assembly. But in all states in 
which the people and the aristocracy are repre- IIL 
sented, the great blow to the aristocratic MDate 
is given, less by altering its own constitution 
than by infusing new elements of democracy 
into the popular assembly. The old boundaries 
arc swept away, not by the levelling of the bank, 
but by the swelling of the torrent. The clucks 
upon democracy ought to be so far concealed, 
as to be placed in the representation of the de- 
mocracy itself; — for checks upon its progress 
from without are but as fortresses to be stormed : 
and what, when latent, was the influence of a 
friend, when apparent, is the resistance of a foe. 
The Areopagus, the constitutional bulwark of 
the aristocratic party of Athena, became more and 
more invidious to the people. And now, when 
( 'noon resisted every innovation on that assembly, 
he only ensured his own destruction, while he 
expedited the policy he denounced. Ephialtes di- 
rected all the force of the popular opinion against 
this venerable senate ; and, at length, though 
not openly assisted by Pericles,* who took no 

* Those historians who presume upon the slovenly sen- 
tences of Plutarch, that Pericles made u an instrument" of 
Ephialtes in assaults on the Areopagus, seem strangely to 
mistake both the character of Pericles, which was dictatorial, 

332 miii 

pool prominent pari in the contention, that, influential 

•talesman succeeded in crippling its funci 
chap. ' ' b 

in. and Limiting it- authority. 

XVII. I do not propose to plunge the readef 

into the voluminous and unprofitable contro- 
versy on the exad nature of the innovations of 
Ephialtes, frhich has agitated the student 
Germany. Ii appears bo me most probable that 
the Areopagus retained the righl of adjudg 
cases of homicide,* and little beside of it- ancient 

not crafty, and the position of Ephialtes, who at that time 
was the lend Of Of liis party, and far more influential than 
Pericles himself. I'lato (ap. Plut. in vit. Peric) rightly 
considers Ephialtes the true overthrower of the Areop 
and although Pericles assisted him, (Aristot. 1. ii. c. f -K) it 
was against Ephialtes as the chief, not " the instrument," 
that the wrath of the aristocracy was directed. 

* See Demosth. adv. Aristocr. p. 642, ed. Reisk. Her- 
man ap. Heidelb. Jahrb. 1830, No. 44. Forckhammer de 
Areopago, &c. against Boeckh. — I cannot agree with those 
who attach so much importance to iEschylus, in the 
tragedy of " The Furies," as an authority in favour of the 
opinion, that the innovations of Ephialtes deprived the Areo- 
pagus of jurisdiction in cases of homicide. It is true that 
the play turns upon the origin of the Tribunal — it is true 
that it celebrates its immemorial right of adjudication of 
murder, and that Minerva declares this court of judges shall 
remain for ever. But would this prophecy be risked at the 
very time when this court was about to be abolished? In 
the same speech of Minerva, far more direct allusion is 


constitutional authority, that it lost altogether BOOK 
its most dangerous power in the indefinite poact ( _ 
it had formerly exercised over the hahits and U1 - 
morals of the people, that any control of the 
finances was wisely transferred to the popular 
senate,* that its irresponsible cliaracter was abo- 
lished, and it was henceforth rendered account- 
able to the people. Such alterations were not 
made without exciting the deep indignation of 
the aristocratic faction. 

In all state reforms a great and comprehen- 
sive mind does not so much consider whether 
each reform is just, as what will be the ultimate 
ascendency given to particular principles. Cimon 
preferred to all constitutions a limited aristo- 
cracy, and his practical experience regarded 
every measure in its genera] tendency towards 
or against the system which he honotly ad- 

made to the police of the court in the tear and reverence 
due to it; and strong exhortations follow, not to venerate 
anarchy or tyranny, or banish - all fear from the city," which 
apply much more forcibly to the council than to the court 
of the Areopagus. 

* That the Areopagus did, prior to the decree of Ephi- 
altes, possess a power over the finances, appears from a pas- 
sage in Aristotle, (ap. Plut. in vit. Them.) in which it is said, 
that, in the expedition to Salamis, the Areopagus awarded 
to each man eight drachma'. 

334 Aiiii.vs: 

ioofl Will. The straggle between the contending 
parties and principle! had commenced bef 

ill. Cimon's expedition to Ithoiiie ; the morti ti< 
tion connected with that event, in weaken 
('inion. weakened the aristocracy itself. Still 
his fall was not immediate,* nor did it I 
place as a single and isolated event, hut as one 
of the necessary consequences of tie poli- 

tical change effected by Ephialtes. All circum- 
stances, however, conspired to place the son of 
Miltiades in a situation which justified the 
j)icion and jealousy of the Athenians. Of all the 
enemies, how powerful soever, that Athens could 
provoke, none were so dangerous as Lacedssmon. 
Dark, wily, and implacable, the rugged Queen 
of the Peloponnesus reared her youth in no other 
accomplishments than those of stratagem and 
slaughter. Her enmity against Athens was no 
longer smothered. Athens had everything to 
fear, not less from her influence than her armies. 
It was not, indeed, so much from the unsheathed 
sword as from the secret councils of Sparta, that 
danger was to be apprehended. It cannot be too 
often remembered, that amongst a great portion of 

* Plutarch attributes his ostracism to the resentment of 
the Athenians on his return from Ithome ; but this is erro- 
neous. He was not ostracised till two years after his re- 


the Athenian aristocracy, the Spartan government hook 

maintained a considerable and sympathetic in- 
telligence. That government ever sought to III 
adapt and mould all popular constitutions to her 
own oligarchic model ; and where she could not 
openly invade, she secretly sought to undermine, 
the liberties of her neighbours. Thus, in addi- 
tion to all fear from an enemy in the field, the 
Athenian democracy were constantly excited ko 
suspicion against a spy within the city : alwa 
struggling with an aristocratic party, which 
aimed at regaining the power it had lost, there 
was just reason to apprehend that that party 
would seize any occasion to encroach upon the 
popular institutions ; i rery feud with Sparta con- 
sequently seemed to the Athenian people, nor 
without cause, to subject to intrigue and conspi- 
racy their civil freedom; and (m always happens 
with foreign interference, whether latent or 
avowed exasperated whatever jealousies already 
existed against those for whose political intert 
the interference was exerted. Bearing thisin mind, 
we shall see no cause to wonder at the vehement 
opposition to which Cimon was now subjected. 
We are driven ourselves to search deeply into 
the causes which led to his prosecution, as to 
that of other eminent men in Athens, from want 
of clear and precise historical details. Plutarch, 


hook to whom, in this instanc are compelled 

CHAP rm, '"> '" i'<'^ ( >i*t, is :i most authority. 

1H - Like most biographers, bit care i- to esall 
licro, though at the expens e of that hero'i oton- 

tr\ men ; ami though an amiable n riter, nor with- 
out some semi-j)hilosoj)liical virus in moral-, 
his mind was angularly deficient in grasp and in 
com|>rclirn>ion. 1 1 « - aever penetratet tin- subtle 
causes of effects. He surreys the past, some- 
times as a scholar, sometimes a- a tale-teller, 
sometimes even as a poet, hut m 
man. Thus, ire learn from him little of the 
true reasons for the ostracism, either of Ari-tides, 
of Themistocles, or of Cimon — points now intri- 
cate, but which might then, alas ! have been 
easily cleared up by a profound inquirer, to the 
acquittal alike of themselves and of their judges. 
To the natural deficiencies of Plutarch we must 
add his party predilections. He was op)- 
to democratic opinions, — and that objection, 
slight in itself, or it might be urged against 
many of the best historians and the wisest 
thinkers, is rendered weighty in that he was 
unable to see, that in all human constitutions 
perfection is impossible, that we must take the 
evil with the good, and that what he imputes to 
one form of government, is equally attributable 
to another. For in what monarchy, what oli- 

ITS RISE AND ru.i . '-YM 

garchy, have not great meo been misunderstood, book 

and great merits exposed to envv ! 

& 1 « CHAP. 

Tims, in the life of Cimon, Plutarch says nx 
that it was " on a slight pretext"* that that lea- 
of the Spartan party in Athena was subjected 
to the ostracism. We have seen enough to con- 
vince us that, whatever the pretext, the reasons, 
at least, were grave and solid — that they were 
nothing short of Cimon 's unvarying ardour tor, 
and constant association with, the principles and 
the government of that state most inimical to 
Athens, and the suspicious policy of which a 
in all times— at that time especially — fraught 
with danger to her power, her peace, and hat 

institutions. Could we penetrate farther into 

the politics of the period, we might justify the 
Athenians yet more. Without calling into qui 
don the integrity and the patriotism of Cimon, 
without supposing that he would have entered 

into any intrigue against the Athenian inde- 
pendence of foreign powers— a supposition his 
subsequent conduct effectually refutes — he might, 
as a sincere and warm partisan of the nobl 
and a resolute opposer of the popular party, have 
sought to restore at home the aristocratic balance 
of power, by whatever means his great rank 
and influence and connexion with the Lacedae- 

* Mu-pdc eirtXajyi'i^evoi irpofciaewc. — Pint, in Vit. CiflB. 17. 

:n^ ati i' 



(•II \l\ 

monian party, could afford him. We ere told 
least, that be not only opposed all the aoVaiM 
"'• of the more libera] part) thai he not only stood 
resolutely by the interests and dignities of the 
Areopagus, srhich had eeased to harmonise \sith 
the more modern institutions, bul that be ex- 
pressly sought to rest rtain prerogati 
which that assembly had formally lost rim 
nil foreign expeditions, and that he earn* 
endeavoured to bring back the whole constitution 
to the more aristocratic government established 
by Clisthenes. It is one thin.: to pr< it i- 
another to restore. A people may be deluded, 
under popular pretexts, out of the right* 
have newly acquired, but they never submit t<> 
be openly despoiled of them. Nor can we call 
that ingratitude which is but the refusal to sur- 
render to the merits of an individual the acqui- 
sitions of a nation. 

All things considered, then, I believe, that if 
ever ostracism was justifiable, it was so in the 
case of Cimon — nay, it was perhaps absolutely 
essential to the preservation of the constitution. 
His very honesty made him resolute in his at- 
tempts against that constitution. His talents, 
his rank, his fame, his services, only rendered 
those attempts more dangerous. 

XIX. Could the reader be induced to view. 


with an examination equally dispassionate, the BOO* 
several ostracisms of Aristides and Themistocles, c , m , 
he might see equal causes of justification, both ni - 
in the motives and in the results. The first 
was absolutely necessary for the defeat of the 
aristocratic party, and the removal of restrict i< mt 
on those energies which instantly found the 
most glorious rents for action ; the second was 
justified by a similar necessity, that produced 
similar effects. To impartial eyes a people mav 
be vindicated without traducing those whom a 
people are driven to oppose. In such august 
and complicated trials the accuser and defendant 
may be both innocent. 

z 2 


\ Till 



UUtiBOMl i> tl ITHgMlANI i:i:\ii:u Of AFf AIM U IMi 


mrrr umii in abbs- inumuui bxpbdittoii ra assist 


si'usiw QOMiraUOl mill nil. \hii:m\s OUOABCfJI 




I. Cimon, summoned to the ostracism, was sen- 
tenced to its appointed term of banishment — 
ten years. By his removal, the situation of 
Pericles became suddenly more prominent and 
marked, and he mingled with greater confidence 
and boldness in public affairs. The vigour of 
the new administration was soon manifest. Me- 



gara had hitherto been faithful to the Lacedae- ^ ,)1 >k 
monian alliance — a dispute relative to the settle- CHA „ 
ment of frontiers broke out between that itate lv - 
and Corinth. Although the Corinthian govern- 
ment, liberal and enlightened, was often op- 
posed to the Spartan oligarchy, it was still essen- 
tial to the interest of both those Peloponne-ian 
states to maintain a firm general alliance, and 
to keep the Peloponnesian confederacy as ■ 
counterbalance to the restless ambition of the 
new head of the Ionian league. Sparta could 
not, therefore, have been slow in preferring the 
alliance of Corinth to that of Megara. On the 
other hand, Megara, now possessed of a demo- 
cratic constitution, had long since abandoned 
the Dorian character and habits. The situation 
of its territories, the nature of its institutions, 
alike pointed to Athens as its legitimate ally. 
Thus, when the war broke out be t we en Megara 
and Corinth, on the side of the latter appeared 
Sparta, while Megara naturally sought the 
sistance of Athens. The Athenian government 
eagerly availed itself of the occasion to in- 
crease the power which Athens was now rapidly 
extending over Greece. If we cast our e\ 
along the map of Greece, we shall perceive that 
the occupation of Megara proffered peculiar ad- 
vantages. It became at once a strong and for- 
midable fortress against any incursions from the 


\ in, 

BOOI PelopODIieSUS, while its sea-ports of Nisa«a and 

CHAP '^S 86 ' Opened new fi.-hU, both of ambition and 

IV. of commerce, alike on tl ii< tad the 

gulf of Corinth. The Athenians seized willingly 

on the alliance thus oll'md to ih.-iu. ;md the 

Megarians bad the wtaknem to yield both Me- 
garaand Pegs to Athenian garrioons, irhile the 

Atheiii;uis fortified their position by long walk 
that united Me<j;ara w ith it- harltour ;it \i-< 

II. Anew and more \a~t enterprise contributed 
towards the stability of the government by drain- 
ing off its bolder spirits, and diverting Un- 
popular attention from domestic to foreign ana 

It is necessary to pass before us, in brief rei 
the vicissitudes of the Persian court. In repub- 
lican Greece, the history of the people man 
side by side with the biography of great men. 
In despotic Persia, all history dies away in the 
dark recesses and sanguinary murthers of a 
palace governed by eunuchs and defended but by 

In the year 465 b. c. the reign of the 
unfortunate Xerxes drew to its close. On his 
return to Suza, after the disastrous results of the 
Persian invasion, he had surrendered himself to 
the indolent luxury of a palace. An able and 
daring traitor, named Artabanus,* but who seems 

* Neither Aristotle, (Polit lib. v. c. 10,) nor Justin, nor 
Ctesias, nor Diodorus, speak of the assassin as kinsman to 



to have been a different personage from that hook 
Artabanus whose sagacity had vainly sought to 
save the armies of Xerxes from tin- expedition **^ 
to Greece, entered into a conspiracy against the 
feeble monarch. By the connivance of ■ I -u- 
nuch, he penetrated at night the chamber of 
the king, — and the gloomy destinies of X«Pl 
were consummated by assassination. Artabtt&Uf 
sought to throw the guilt upon Darius, the 
eldest son of the murdered king; and Artaxei \ 
the younger brother, seems to have connived 
at a charge which might render himself the law- 
ful heir to the throne. Darin- tCOOrdingij 
perished by the Mine fate tt Ml father. The 
extreme youth of Artaxnwr- had indueed Arta- 
banus to believe that but ■ -lender and i n tec nr e 
life now stood between limtetf and the throne ; 
but the young prince was already matter of the 
royal art of dissimulation : he watebed his op- 
portunity, — and by a counter-revolution Arta- 
banus was sacrificed to the manes of his victims.* 
Thus Artaxerxes obtained the undisturbed pot- ' 

Xerxes. In Plutarch (Ait. Them ) he is Artabanus the 

* Ctesias, 30; Diod. 11 ; Justin, lib. iii. c. 1. According 
to Aristotle, Artabanus, as captain of the king's guard, re- 
ceived an order to make away with Darius, neglected the 
command, and murdered Xerxes from tears for his own 

:;i i 

\ i in 

boi ion of the Persian throne. The new monarch 

appeari to have derived from oature a strong 

iv. intellect than hi- fat In r. Hut the abuses, so 

rapid and rank ofgfowtfa in eastern despotii 
which now ate awa\ the strength of the Persian 
monarchy, wnv already, perhaps, past the 
sibility of reform. The enormous extent of the 
ill-regulated empire tempted the ambition of 
chief- who might have piansibly hoped, that as 
the Persian masters bad now degenerated to the 
effeminacy of the Assyrians tin y had supplanted, 
the enterprise of a second Cyrus might be 
crowned by a .similar BUOC 

Egypt had been rather overran by \< 

tlian subdued, — and the spirit of its ancient people 
waited only the occasion of revolt. A Libyan 
prince, of the name of Inarus, whose territories 
bordered Egypt, entered that country, and 
B.c. 460. hailed by the greater part of the population 
as a deliverer. The recent murder of Xerxes — 
the weakness of a new reign, commenced in so 
sanguinary a manner, appeared to favour their 
desire of independence ; and the African adven- 
turer beheld himself at the head of a considerable 
force. Having already secured foreign subsi- 
diaries, Inarus was anxious yet more to strengthen 
himself abroad ; and more than one ambassador 
was despatched to Athens, soliciting her a<- 
ance, and proffering, in return, a share* in the 



government for whose establishment her arms BOOK 
were solicited: — a singular fatality, that t! 
petty colony which, if we believe tradition, had *▼■ 
so many centuries ago settled in the then obscure 
corners of Attica, should now be chosen, the 
main auxiliary of the parent state in her vital 
struggles for national Independence. 

III. In acceding to the propositions of Inarus, 
Pericles yielded to considerations wholly con- 
trary to his after policy, which made it a prin- 
cipal object to confine the energies «>t" Athens 
within the limits of Greece. It is probable that 
that penetrating ami scientific statesman (if, in- 
deed, he had yet attained to a position which 
enabled him to follow out hi- own conceptions) 
saw that every new government must dazzle 
either by great enterprises abroad, or great 
changes at home, — and that he preferred the 
former. There are lew -aerifices that a war\ 
minister, newly-established, from whom high 
hopes are entertained, and who can justify the 
destruction of a rival party only by the splen- 
dour of its successor, — will not hazard rather 
than incur the contempt which follows disap- 
pointment. He will do something that is dan- 
gerous rather than do nothing that is brilliant. 

Neither the hatred nor the fear of Persia was 
at an end in Athens ; and to carry war into the 
heart of her empire was a proposition eagerly 

346 vj j 

book hailed. The more democratic and turbulent 
portion of the populace, ria. toe seamen, bad 
i\. already been diapoaed of in an expedition of 
two hundred triremea againat ( lygrua, lint the 
distant and magnificent enterprise <»f* Bgypi 
the hope of ntm empire — the lu^t of andis* 
treasures — were more alluring than r 1 < - - reduction 
of Cyprus. That island vraa abandoned, and 
the licet, competed both of Athenian and con- 
federate ahipa, sailed up 1 1 * < - Nile. Maaten of 
thai river, the Athenians advanced to Memphis, 
the capital of Lower Egypt. They stormed and 
took two of the divisions of that city ;— the third, 
called the White Castle, (occupied by the 
Medes, the Persians, and such of the Egyptians 
as had not joined the revolt,) resisted their 

IV. While thus occupied in Egypt, the Athe- 
nian arms were equally employed in Greece. 
The whole forces of the commonwealth were in 
demand — war on every side. The alliance with 
Megara not only created an enemy in Corinth ; 
but the Peloponnesian confederacy became in- 
volved with the Attic : Lacedaemon herself, yet 
inert, but menacing ; while the neighbouring 
iEgina, intent and jealous, prepared for hos- 
tilities soon manifest. 

The Athenians forestalled the attack — made a 
descent on Haliae, in Argolis — were met by the 


Corinthians and Epidaurians, and the result of book 
battle was the victory of the latter. This defeat 
the Athenians speedily retrieved at sea. OH' **» 
Cecryphalea, in the Saronic gulf, they attacked 
and utterly routed the Peloponnesian fleet. 
And now iEgina openly declared war and joined 
the hostile league. An important battle \ 
fought by these two maritime powers with the 
confederates of either side. Tin Athenians were 
victorious — took seventy ships —and pushing the 
advantage they had obtained, landed in iEgina, 
and besieged her city. Three hundred heavy- 
armed Peloponnesians were de spatch e d to the 
relief of iEgina ; while the Corinthians invaded 
the Megarian territory, seized tin 
ranea, and advanced t< ra with their allies. 

Never was occasion more propitious. So large 
a force in Egypt, so large a foree at iEgina, — 
how was it possible for the Athenians to inarch 
to the aid of Megara? They appeared limited 
to the choice either to abandon Megara, or to 
raise the siege of iEgina : — so reasoned the Pelo- 
ponnesians. But the advantage of a constitution 
widely popular, is that the whole community 
become soldiers in time of need. Myronides, 
an Athenian of great military genius, not unas- 
sisted by Pericles, whose splendid qualities now 
daily developed themselves, was well adapted 
to give direction to the enthusiasm of the people. 

348 vim. \ 

BOOl Not a mail was called from .ll-ina. The whole 
IV, , R 

( regular force disposed of, there yet remained at 

1V - Athens those; too lged and tho 

tlie ordinary service. Under Myionides, boyi 
and old men marched at once to th tanee 

of their Megariao ally. A battle ensued . both 
sides retiring, neither considered itself defeated. 
But the Corinthians retreating to Corinth, tin- 
Athenians erected a trophy on the field. The 
Corinthian government received it- troops with 
reproaches, and after an interval of twelve d 
the latter returned to the scene of contest, and 
asserting their claim to the victory, erected s 
trophy of their own. During the work the 
Athenians sallied from Megara, where they had 
ensconced themselves, attacked and put to flight 
the Corinthians ; and a considerable portion of 
the enemy turning into ground belonging to a 
private individual, became entangled in a large 
pit or ditch, from which was but one outlet, viz. 
that by which they had entered. At this passage 
the Athenians stationed their heavy-armed troop-. 
while the light-armed soldiers surrounded the 
ditch, and with the missiles of darts and stones 
put the enemy to death. The rest (being the 
greater part) of the Corinthian forces effected a 
safe but dishonourable retreat. 

V. This victory effected, and Megara secured, 
— although iEgina still held out, and although 



the fate of the Egyptian expedition irai -till un- hook 
known, — the wonderful activity of the govern- "" 

mcnt commenced, what even in times of trail- IT. 
quillity would have been a great and erduo 
achievement. To unite their city with fa 
nprts, they set to work at the erection of the 
Long Walls, which extended from Athens both 
to Phalerus and PUeeus. Under Cimon, prepa- 
rations already had been made for the und. 
taking, and the spoils of Persia now provideil the 
meant for the defence of Athens. 

Meanwhile, the Spartans still continued at the 
sie«e of Ithome. We must not imagine that all 
the Helots had joined in the revolt. This, indeed, 
would be almost to BUppOM the utter disorgani- 
sation of the Spartan Mate. The mOfl loxoHoui 
subjects of a despotism were never more utterly 
impotent in procuring for themselves the net 
saries of life, than were the hardy and ab.-temiou- 
freemen of the Dorian Sparta. It was dishonour 
for a Spartan to till the land — to exereiM a trade, 
lie had all the prejudices against any caUuuj but 
that of arms, w Inch characterised a noble of the 
middle ages. 

As is ever the case in the rebellion of slaves, 
the rise was not universal ; a sufficient number 
of these wretched dependents remained passive 
and inert to satisfy the ordinary wants of their 
masters, and to assist in the rebuilding of the 

•V;<> kTHENl : 

book town. Still the Sparta j enfeebled, 

crippled, ;iinl embarrassed by the loss of the r< 
c 1 1 \ r. 
i\. and the siege of Ithome sufficed t<» absorb theif 

attention, and to make tliein regard without open 
hostilities, it' with secret enmity, the op< 

of the Athenians. The Spartan alliance formally 

dissoh :ara. with it- command of the 

Peloponsefui seized— the Doric « ■ i r % of Corinth 
humbled and defeated — iEgina blockaded ;— all 
these tie- Athenian proceedings — the Spartans 

bore without any formal declaration of war. 

VI. And now, in the eighth year of tin; Mes- 
senian war, piety succeeded, where pride and 
revenge had failed, and the Spartans permitted 
other objects to divide their attention with the 
siege of Ithomc. It was one of the finest cha- 
racteristics of that singular people, their venera- 
tion for antiquity. For the little, rockv, and 
obscure territory of Doris, whence tradition 
derived their origin, they felt the affection and 
reverence of sons. A quarrel arising between the 
people of this state and the neighbouring Pho- 
cians, the latter invaded Doris, and captured one 
of its three towns.* The Lacedaemonians marched 
at once to the assistance of their reputed father- 
land, with an army of no less than fifteen hun- 

* Thucyd. lib. i. 107. The three towns of Doris were, 
according to Thucydides, Bseum, Cytenium, and Erineus. — 
The Scholiast on Pindar (Pyth. i. 121) sneaks of six towns. 


drcd heavy-armed Spartans, and ten thousand hook 
of their Peloponnesian allies,* under the coin- ^\ 
mand of Nicomedes, son of Cleombrotus, and ^_ 
guardian of their king Pleistoanax, still a minor. 
They forced the Phocians to abandon the to\ui 
they had taken ; and having effectually pro- 
tected Doris by a treaty of peace between tin- 
two nations, prepared to return home. But in 
this they were much perplexed ; — the pass of 
Geranea was now occupied by the Athenian 
Megara, too, and Pegae were in their hand-. 
Should they pass by sea through the Gulf of 
Crissa, an Athenian squadron already occupied 
that passage. Either way they wciv inti-reepted.t 
Under all circumstances, they resolved to halt 
awhile in BcBOtift, and watch an opportunity to 
effect their return. But with tl ible 

motives for that sojourn, assigned by Thucydi d 
there wai another more deep and latent. ^ i 
have had eonstant occasion to remark how 
singularly it was the Spartan policy to plot 
against the constitution of free states, and 
how well-founded was the Athenian jealousy of 
the secret interference of the Grecian Venice. 

* Thucyd. lib. i. 

t Thucydides, in mentioning these operations of the 

Athenians, and the consequent fears of the Spartans, pi. 
to what a length hostilities had gone, though war was not 
openly declared. 

352 \tiii:\ 

BOOI I f i 1 1 1 i 1 1 l» - now in Boeotia, Nicomedea enl 
I v. 

into a clandestine communication with certain 

( MAI. 

,v - of the oligarchic party in Athena, the obji 

the latter being the overthrow of* the existent 

popular constitution. With this object was 
tainly linked the recal ofCimon; though there 
is no reason to believe that gi teral a party 

in the treason. This conspiracy was one main 
reason of the halt in Boeotia. Another was, pro- 
bably, the conception of a great and politic <!<•- 
sign, glanced at only by historians, but which, 
if successful, would have ranked amongst tin- 
masterpieces of Spartan statesmanship. Thin 
design was — while Athen- was to be weakened 
by internal divisions, and her national spirit 
effectually curbed by the creation of an oligarchy, 
the tool of Sparta — to erect a new rival to 
Athens in the Boeotian Thebes. It is true that 
this project was not, according to Diodorus, 
openly apparent until after the battle of Tanagra. 
But such a scheme required preparation ; and 
the sojourn of Nicomedes in Boeotia afforded 
him the occasion to foresee its possibility and 
prepare his plans. Since the Persian invasion, 
Thebes had lost her importance, not only 
throughout Greece, but throughout Boeotia, her 
dependent territory. Many of the states refused 
to regard her as their capital : and the Theban 


government desired to regain its power. Pro- ,,,M)K 
wises to make war upon Athens rendered the .,, 

1 ( II. M*. 

Thehan power auxiliary to Sparta: the more n - 
Thebes was strengthened, the more Athens was 
endangered : and Sparta, ever Irene to quitting 
the Peloponnesus, would thus erect a harrier to 
the Athenian arms on the rery frontier- of 

\ II. \\ bile such were the designs and 
schemes of Nicomedef, the conspiracy of the 
aristocratic party could not be so secret in 
Athens, but what some rumour, some suspicion, 
broke abroad. The people became alarmed and 
incensed. They resolved to anticipate the war ; 
and, judging Nicomedee eul oil" from retreat, 

and embarrassed and confined iu his position, 

they marched against him witli a thou.-and 

Argives, with a band of Thessatian i aad 

some other allied troops drawn principally from 

Ionia, which, united to the whole force of the 
armed population within their walls, amounted, 
in all, to fourteen thousand men. 

VIII. It is recorded by Plutarch, that durin 
their inarch Cimon appeared, and sought per- 
mission to join the army. This was refused by 
the Senate of Five Hundred, to whom the petition 
was referred, not from any injurious suspicion 
of Cimon, but from a natural fear that his pre- 

vol. it. A A 

354 hj 

ioov leace, in-trad of inspiring confidence, would i 
iv. , ' 

ate confusion ; and that it nii-'ht be plau-iblv 
CHAP. ' 

tv. represented that he sought less to resist tin 

tine than to introduce them into Athei. 

proof how strong wai the impreesion againeJ 

him, and how extensive had been the Spartan 
intrigant, (imon retired, beseeching his 
to vindicate themselves from the aspersi 
ujjon them. Placing tin- armour ofCimoi 
a species of holy itandard in their tanks, a 
hundred of the warmest supporters amongst his 
trihe, advanced to battle conscious of tie tru.-t 
committed to their charge. 
n.c.4.17. IX. In tin- territory of Tanagi • en- 

gagement took place. On that day Periclei 
liiinselt" fought in the thickest part of the ha; 
exposing himself to every danger, as if anxiottf 
that the loss of Cimon should not be mil 
The battle was long, obstinate, and even : when 
in the midst of it, the Thessalian cavalry sud- 
denly deserted to the Spartans. Despite this 
treachery the Athenians, well supported by the 
Argives, long maintained their ground with ad- 
vantage. But when night separated the armies,* 
victory remained with the Spartans and their 
allies. t 

The Athenians were not, however, much dis- 

* Diod. Sic. lib. xi. -[ Thucyd lib. i. 


heartened by defeat, nor did the Spartans profit no 
bv their advantage. Anxious onlv for escape. 

J t & ' CHAP. 

Nicomedes conducted hifl forces homeward, : 
passed through Megara, destroying the fruit- 
trees on his march; and, gaining the pan <>f 
Geranea, which the Athenians had deserted to 
join the camp at Tanagra, arrived at Lacedav 

Meanwhile the Thebans took advantage <>t' 
the victory to extend their authority, agreeably 
to the project conceived with Sparta. Thebes 
now attempted the reduction of all the cities of 
Boeotia. Some submitted— others opposed. 

X. Aware of the necessity <>t' immedii 
measures against a neighbour, brave, nan 

vering, and ambitious, the Atheiii;. ni- 

nient lost no time in recruiting its broken I 
Under Mvronides, an army, collected from the 

allies and dependent states, was convened t" 

semble upon a certain day. Many failed the 
appointment, and the general was urged to delay 
his inarch till their arrival. " It is not the part 
of a general," said .Mvronides sternly, 4 ' to await 
the pleasure of his soldiers ! By delay I read 
an omen of the desire of the loiterers to avoid the 
enemy. Better rely upon a few faithful, than on 
many disaffected." 

With a force comparatively small, Mvronid- 

366 \ i in.-. 

book commenced lii- march, entered Boeotia -i\t\ 

d;i\s only after tin- l>attl<- of Tanagra, and en- 


w. gaging tlic lid'otians at (Knoplivta, obtained 
a complete and splendid victory. This bati 
though Diodom could find no details of the 
action, sms reekonad by Athens among the i 
glorious; she bad ever achieved; preferred l>v 

the vain Greeks even to those of Marathon and 

Plates*, inasniuch as Greek was opposed to 
Greek, and not to the Barbarians. Those, who 

fell on the Athenian sid< were firsl honoured by 

public burial in the Ceramicu — " A^ m 
says Plato, " who fought against Grecians for 
the liberties of Greece." Myronides follow- d 
up his victory by levelling the walls of Tana- 
gra. All Boeotia except Thebes herself 
brought into the Athenian alliance — as demo- 
cracies in the different towns, replacing the oli- 
garchical governments, gave the moral blow to 
the Spartan ascendency. Thus, in effect, the 
consequences of the battle almost deserved the 
eulogies bestowed upon the victory. Those con- 
sequences were to revolutionize nearly all the 
states in Boeotia ; and, by calling up a demo- 
cracy in each state, Athens at once changed 
enemies into allies. 

From Boeotia, Myronides marched to Phocis, 
and, pursuing the same policy, rooted out the 


oligarchies, and established popular government-. BOOS 

The Locrians of Opus gave a hundred of their 

1 fe CHAP 

wealthiest citizens as hostages. Returned to iv. 

Athens, Myronides was received with public- 
rejoicings,* and thus closed a short but brilliant 
campaign, which had not only conquered ene- 
mies, but had established everywhere garri>on~ 
of friends. 

XI. Although the banishment of Cinion had 
appeared to complete the triumph of the popu- 
lar party in Athens, his opinions were not ba- 
nished also. Athens, like all free states, was ever 
agitated by the feud of parties, at once its dan- 
ger and its strength. Parties in Atheni were, 
however, utterly unlike many of those that rent 
the peace of the Italian republic! ; nor are they 
rightly understood in the vague deelaniations of 
Barthelenii or Mitford ; they were not only 
parties of names and men, — thev were iko 
parties of principles — the parties of restriction 
and of advance. And thus the triumph of either 
was invariably followed by the triumph of the 
principle it espoused. Nobler than the bloodv 
contests of mere faction, we do not see in Athens 
the long and sweeping proscriptions, the atrocious 
massacres that attended the party-strifes of an- 
cient Rome, or of modern Italy. The ostra- 
* Diod. lib. xi. 

U.JN All I J.N 

moor cism. or the fine, of some obnoxious and eminent 

partizans, usually contented the wrath of the 

( n.\i' # ' J 

iv. victorious politicians. And in tin- ad\ain-. 

cause the people band the main vent for their 
passion*. 1 trust) however, that 1 shall uot b 
cused of prejudice when 1 state as a fact, that the 
popular part \ in Athens seems to hare been mocfa 
mom moderate and less unprincipled even in its 
excesses than it- antagonists. W «• n 

like, tlir Pisi«>tratida\ leagued with the Persian, 

nor with i betraying Athens to the 

Spartan. What the oligarchic faction did when 
triumphant, we see hereafter in the establishment 

of the Thirty Tyrants. And compared with their 
offences, the ostracism of Aristides, or the fine 
and banishment of Cimon, lose all their colours 
of wrong. 

XII. The discontented advocates for an oli- 
garchy, who had intrigued with Nicomedcs, had 
been foiled in their object, partly by the con- 
duct of Cimon in disavowing all connexion with 
them, partly by the retreat of Nicomedes him- 
self. Still their spirit was too fierce to suffer 
them to forego their schemes without a struggle, 
and after the battle of Tanagra they broke out 
into open conspiracy against the republic. 

The details of this treason are lost to us ; it is 
one of the darkest passages of Athenian history. 


From scattered and solitary references we can 
learn, however, that for a time it threatened the 
democracy with ruin.* The victory of the Sp 
tans at Tanagra gave strength to the Spartan 
party in Athens ; it al><> inspired witli fear main 

of the people ; it was evidently desirable rather 

to effect a peace with Sparta than to hazard a 
war. Who 10 likely to effect that ] . the 

banished < limon ! Now was the time to press for 
In- recal. lather at this period, or shortly after- 

* Certain German historians, Midler among otlier>. have 
built enormoui conclusions upon the maOett data, when 
they rappoM Cimon wai implicated in Ihii eoeepe 

Meirs, (Ilistoria Juris de honi> Dainnatis. p. 4. note 11,) is 

lingular); unsuccessful in connecting the •vppeoad fia 
fifty talents incurred by cimon, with the civil commotio: 

this period. In fait, that Cimon \va- e\er fined at all is 

very improbable; the supposition rests upon noet eqaii 

ground; if adopted, it is more likely, perhaps, that the Hue was 

inflicted after his return from Thasos, when he was 

Of neglecting the honour of the Athenian arms, and beii. 

duced l>\ Macedonian gold, (a charge precisely of a nature 

for which a fine would have heen incurred.) But the whole 
tale of this imaginary fine, founded upon a sentence in De- 
mosthenes, who, like many orators. «:i> by no means minutely 
accurate in historical facts, is possihly nothing more t! 
confused repetition of the old story of the tine of fifty talents 
(the same amount) imposed upon Miltiades, and really paid 
by Cimon. This is doubly, and, indeed, indisputably, clear, 
if we accept Bekker's reading of llupitov for Kurpiov in the 
sentence of Demosthenes referred to. 




booi winds. Epbialtes, hii most vehement enem 
barbarously murdered according to Aristotl 
n ■ victim to the hatred of the oobl 
\III. Periclei Iia<l al 
position to ( limoo vril it) and 

and indeed the aristocratic leaden of COD tend if 

parties are rarely .-<> bostil b other a> their 

inbordinate followers ^i]>]>'»-<-. In the pri 
itrife for the recal <>f nil rival, amidst all the 

intrigues and conspiracies, the open violence and 
the secret machination, which threatened not 

only the duration of the government, but the 
ven existence of the republic, Pericles met the 
danger by proposing himself the repeal of 

mon's sentence. 

Plutarch, with a childish sentimentality com- 
mon to him when he means to be singularly 
effective, bursts into an exclamation upon the 
generosity of this step, and the candour and 
moderation of those times, when resentments 
could be so easily laid aside. But the profound 
and passionless mind of Pericles was above all 
the weaknesses of a melo-dramatic generosity. 
And it cannot be doubted that this measure was 
a compromise between the government and the 
more moderate and virtuous of the aristocratic 
party. Perhaps it was the most advantageous 
compromise Pericles was enabled to effect ; for 


by concession with respect to individuals, we hook 
can often prevent concession as to things. The 
recal # of the great leader of the anti-popular IT. 
faction may have been deemed equivalent to 
the surrender of many popular rights. And hud 
we a deeper insight into the intrigues of that 
day, and the details of the oligarchic- conspim 
1 suspect we should find that by recalling Ciinon, 
Pericles saved the constitution.! 

* II* we can attach any credit to the Oration on 1\ 
ascribed to Andocides, CimOD was residing on his patri- 
monial estates in the Chersonese at the time of his recal. 
As Athens retained its right to the sovereignty of this 
colony, and as it was a most important position as re- 
spected the recent Athenian conquests under C'imon him- 
self, the asseition, if true, will show that Cimon's ostra- 
cism was attended with no undue persecution. Had the 
government >eriously suspected him of any guilty connivance 
with the oligarchic conspirators, it could scarcely ha\e per- 
mitted him to remain in a colony, the localities of which 
were peculiarly favourable to any treasonable designs he 
might have formed. 

t In the recal of C'imon, Plutarch tells us, some histo- 
rians asserted that it was arranged b et ween the two parties 
that the administration of the state should be divided; that 
C'imon should be invested with the foreign command of Cy- 
prus, and Pericles remain the head of the domestic govern- 
ment. But it was not until the sixth year after his recal, # 
(viz. in the archonship of Euthydemus, see Diodorus xii.) 
that Cimon went to Cyprus ; and before that event, Pericles 
himself was absent on foreign expeditions. 


book XIV. The first and in<>~t popular benefit an- 

iv. . 

ticipated from tin- recal of the -on <>f Milti. 
chap. ' 

tV. in a reconciliation between Sparta and Athens, 

was not immediately realized, further than l>\ 
an armistice of tour months.* 

About this time the lon«r walls of tin- Pira 


B.C. 456. were completed, and shortly afti _ma 

\ ielded to the arms of the Athenians, noon terms 

yield* J l 

ll.C.455. which Subjected the citizens of that gallant and 

adventurous isle (whose Bchierementi and com- 
merce seem no less a miracle than the greas 
of Athens when we survey the limit- of their nar- 
row and rocky domain) to the rival they had long 
so fearlessly, nor fruitlessly, braved. The iEgine- 
tans surrendered their shipping, demolished 
their walls, and consented to the payment of an 
annual tribute. And so was fulfilled the pro- 
verbial command of Pericles, that /Egina 01 
not to remain the eye-sore of Athens. 

XV. iEgina reduced, the Athenian fleet of fifty 
gallies manned by four thousand men,f under 
the command of Tolmides, circumnavigated 

* Plutarch, by a confusion of dates, blends this short 
armistice with the five years truce, some time afterwards con- 
cluded. Mitford and others have followed him in his error. 
That the recal of Cimon was followed by no peace, not only 
with the Spartans, but the Peloponnesians generally, is evi- 
dent from the incursions of Tolmides presently to be related. 

f Diod. lib. xu 


the Peloponnesus, — the armistice of four month- hook 

had expired, — and, landing in Laconia, Tol- 

t mi' 
mides burnt Gythium, a dock of the Lacedav i\ . ' 

monians ; took Chalcis, a town belonging to 
Corinth, and debarking at Sicyon, engaged and 
defeated the Sicyonians. Thence proceed! 
to Cepliallenia, he mastered the cities of t! 
isle; and descending at Naupaetus, on the Co- 
rinthian gulf, wrested it from the Ozolian I 

In the same year with this expedition, and in M , 
tlie tenth year of the siege, Ithoine surrendered 
to Lacedamion. The long and gallant iv>i-t- 
ance of that town, the precipitous >ite of which 
nature herself had fort i tied, if one of tin- 
most memorable and gloriouf event! in the ( Si 
eian history ; and we cannot but regret that the 
imperfect morality of those day-, which saw glory 
in the valour of freemen, rebellion only in that 
of slaves, should have left us but frigid and 
■canty accounts of so obstinate a siege. To pos- 
teritv neither the cause nor the achievement! of 
Marathon or Plat.ea, seem the one more holy, 
the other more heroic, than this long defiance of 
Messenians and Helots against the prowess of 
Sparta, and the aid of her allies. The reader will 
rejoice to learn that it was on no dishonourable 
terms that the city at last surrendered. Life 

364 .vim 

book ind free permission t<> depart «u gristed to the 
besieged, and recorded l»v a pillar erected <>n 

{ ' II A I * 

i\ the banks of 'lie Alpheus. 4 Hut such of the 

Helotf as had 0008 taken in battle, <>r in the 

neighbouring territory, i sin reduced t<> 

slavery — the ringleaders so spprehended, elone 

The gallant defenders of [thome baring con- 
ditioned to quit for ever the Peloponm 
Tolmides invested then with the possession of 
his new conquest of* Wanpactns. There, nnders 
democratic government, protected by the power 
of Athens, they regained their ancient freedom, 
and preserved their hereditary name of M< 
nians — long distinguished from their neighbour! 
by their peculiar dialect. 

XVI. While thus, near at home, the Athe- 
nians had extended their conquests, and ce- 
mented their power, the adventurers they had 
despatched to the Nile were maintaining their 
strange settlement with more obstinacy than 
success. At first, the Athenians, and their allv, 
the Lybian Inarus, had indeed, as we have seen, 
obtained no inconsiderable advantage. 

Anxious to detach the Athenians from the 

* See Midler's Dorians, and the authorities he quotes. 
Vol. i. B. 1. 

f For so I interpret Diodorus. 



Egyptian revolt, Artaxerxes had despatched an BOOK 

ambassador to Sparta, in order to prevail upon ^^ 
that state to make an excursion into Attica, and J^ 
so compel the Athenians to withdraw their troofN 
from Egypt. The liability of the Spartan go- 
\< rument to corrupt temptation was not un- 
known to a court which had received the Spar- 
tan fugitives ; and the ambassador w;ts charged 
with large treasures to bribe those whom he 
could not otherwise convince. Nevertheless, 
the negotiation failed ; the government could 
not be induced to the alliance with the Persian 
king. There was indeed a certain spirit of ho- 
nour inherent in that haughty nation which, if 
not incompatible with cunning and intrigue, 
held at least in profound disdain, an alliance with 
the Barbarian, for what mis. But, in fact, 

tlif Spartans were then entirely absorbed in the 
reduction of Ithoine, and the war in A ready ; 
and it would, farther, have been the height of 
impolicy in that state, if meditating any deeiglM 
against Athens, to assist in the recal of an army 
which it was its very interest to maintain em- 
ployed in distant and perilous expeditions. 

The ambassador had the satisfaction indeed of 
wasting some of his money, but to no purpose ; 
and he returned without success to Asia. Arta- 
xerxes then saw the necessity of arousing him- 

book self to those active exertions which the feeble- 
Bess of ;in exhausted despotism rendered tin* 

CHAP. ' 

iv. final, not the first, resort. Under Megabyzus 
;tn immense arniv was collected, trs 
ria and Phoenicia, it arrived in I 
the Egyptian lore- in ■ pitched battle, and ob- 
tained a complete victory. Thence man-Inn 
Memphis, it drove the Greeks from their si 
of the White < :istle, till then continued, and 
skat them nj) in Prosopitis, an island in tin- 
Nile, around which their >hij<- lay anchored, 
Megabyzus ordered the channel to be drained 
by dykes, and the vessels, the main force of the 

Athenians, were left stranded. Terrified by 

this dexterous manoeuvre, as well as by the 
success of the Persians, the Egyptians renounced 
all further resistance ; and the Atheniai 
deprived at once of their vessels and their 

XVII. Nothing daunted, and inspired by 
their disdain no less than by their valour, the 
Athenians were yet to the Barbarian what the 
Norman knights were afterwards to the Greeks. 
They burnt their vessels that they might be as 
useless to the enemy as to themselves, and, ex- 
horting each other not to dim the glory of their 
past exploits, shut up still in the small town of 

* Diod. Sic. lib. xi. 


Bvblus, situated in the isle of Prosopitis, re- BOOK 

solved to defend themselves to the last 


The blockade endured a year and a half, such iv. 

was the singular ignorance of the art oi 
in that time. At length, when the channel I 
drained, as I have related, the Persians marched 
across the dry bed, and carried the placi 
Und assault. So ended this wild and romantic 
expedition. The greater part of the Athenians 

perished ; a few, however, either forced their 
way by arms, or, as Diodorus more probably 
relates, were permitted by treaty t<> retire, out of 
the Egyptian territory. Taking the route oi' 
Lybia, they arrived at Cyrene, and finally 
reached Athena. 

lnarus, the author of the revolt, 
and perished on the i and the whole of 

EJgypt once more succumbed to the Persian 

yoke, save only that portion called the marshy 

or fenny parts, (under the dominion of ■ pria 

named AmyrtSSUS,) protected by the nature of 
the soil and the proverbial valour of the inha- 
bitants. Meanwhile a squadron of fifty vessels, 
despatched by Athens to the aid of their coun- 
trymen, entered the Mendesian mouth of the 
Nile too late to prevent the taking of Byblus. 
Here they were surprised and defeated by the 
Persian troops and a Phoenician fleet, and few b.c. 

\ I III A 

book survived ;i slaughter, which pal the last seal on 
" the disastrous n mlti of the Egj ptian expedition. 
iv- At home the Athenian! continued, how. 

their military operations. Theaaaly, lik<- the 
pest of Ghreece, had long ihaken off the forms 
of kingly government, hot the ipirit of mo- 
narchy still survived in i country where the fen 
w«rc opulent and the multitude enslaved. The 
Theeaalian Republics, united l>\ an aasemblv of 
deputies from the rarieus towns, elected for 
their head, ■ species of protector — who appears 
to have possessed many of the characteristics 
of the Podesta of the Italian states. His no- 
minal station was that of military command 
— a station which, in all, save the most per- 
fect, constitutions, comprehends also civil au- 
thority. The name of Tagus was given to this 
dangerous chief, and his power and attributes 
so nearly resembled those of a monarch, that 
even Thucydides confers on a Tagus the title of 
king. Orestes, one of these princes, had been 
driven from his country by a civil revolution. 
He fled to Athens and besought her assistance 
to effect his restoration. That the Athenians 
should exert themselves in favour of a man 
whose rank so nearly resembled the odious dig- 
nity of a monarch, appears a little extraordinary. 
But as the Tagus was often the favourite of the 
commonalty, and the foe of the aristocratic 



party, it is possible that in restoring (>i 

the Athenians might have seen a new occasion 

& ( ( HAP. 

to further the policy so triumphantly adopted iv. 
in Boeotia and Phocis, — to expel a hostile oli- 
garchy and establish a friendly democracy.* 
Whatever their views, they decided to yield 
to the exile the assistance lie demanded, and 
under Myronides an army in the following 
year accompanied Orestes into Tfoessaly . The] 

were aided by the Boeotians and Plmciuns. 
Myronides marched to Pharsalus, a Thessalian 
city, and mastered the surrounding count r 
but the obstinate resistance of the city pro- 
mising a more protracted blockade than it w;i- 
deemed advisable to await, tbe Athenian- raised 

the siege without effecting the object of the ex- 

XVIII. The possession of Pegae and the new 
colony of Naupactus,f induced the desire of 63 
tending the Athenian conquests on the neigh- 
bouring coasts, and the government were natu- 
rally anxious to repair the military honours of 
Athens — lessened in Egypt, and certainly not in- 
creased in Thessal v. With a thousand Athenian 
soldiers, Pericles himself set out for Pegae. 

* There was a democratic part) in Thrmlj always fa- 
vourable to Athens. See Thucyd. h 

t Now Lepanto. 

370 vi m | 

book Thence the fleet, there anchored, ma<J enl 

i \ 

on Sicvon ; Pericles defeated tin- Sicvonians in ;i 

i\. pitched battle, and L I the city; but after 

some fruitless assault-. Learning thai th< 
tun- vera coming to the relief of the b< 

he (jiiitted the city, and, reinforced by tone 

,\< thflBans, tailed to the opposite -i<l«- of the c 

BC.454. tineiit, crossed o\er tin: < uiinthian Bl 

Begad the town of CEniadse, in Acarnania, 
inhabitants of which Pausanias* styles the hi 
ditary enemies of the Athenian-.; i the 

neighbouring country, and bore awaj no in- 

considerahle spoils. Although be reduced n<» 
city, the successes of Pericles were signal eno 
to render the campaign triumphant ;f arid it 
gratified the national pride and resentment to 
have insulted the cities and wasted the lands of 
the Peloponnesus. 

These successes were sufficient to render a 
peace with Sparta and her allies advisable for 
the latter, while they were not sufficiently de- 
cided to tempt the Athenians to prolong irregu- 
lar and fruitless hostilities. Three years v. 
consumed without further aggressions on either 
side, and probably in negotiations for peace. 
At the end of that time, the influence and inter- 

* Paus. lib. ii. c. 25. + Plut. in vit. Peric. 


vention of Cimon obtained a truce of* five year* book 
between the Athenians and the Peloponnesians. 

XIX. The truce with the Peloponnohms re- J v. 
moved the main obstacle to those more bright B.< 
and extensive prospects of enterprise and ambi- 
tion which the defeat of the Persians had <>jm i 
to the Athenians. In that restless and impair- 
ing energy, which is the characteristic of an in- 
tellectual republic, there seems, as it were, ■ 
kind of destiny : a power impossible to iv>i>t 
urges the state from action to action, from pro- 
gress to progress, with a rapidity danger 
while it dazzles ; resembling in this the career 
of individuals impelled, onward, first to attain, 
and thence to preserve, power, and who cannot 
struggle against the fate which ne, I thein 

to soar, until, by the moral gra\itation of human 
things, the point which has no bti/o/td is at- 
tained ; and the next effort to rise is but the pre- 
lude of their fall. In such states Time, indeed, 
moves with gigantic strides ; years concentrate 
what would be the epochs of centuries in the 
march of less popular institutions. The planet 
of their fortunes rolls with an equal speed 
through the cycle of internal civilisation as of 
foreign glory. The condition of their brilliant 
life is the absence of repose. The accelerated 
circulation of the blood beautifies but consumes, 

bb 2 

M2 ATI 1 1 • 

BOOK ;iinl action itself, exhausting the stores of youth 

i \ 

by its very vigour, becomes a mortal 1»ut divine 
CHAP. * J 

iv. disease. 

XX. When Athens rose to the ascendent 
Greece, it was necessary to the preservation 
of that sudden and splendid dignify, thai she 
should sustain the naval renown by which it 
had been mainly acquired. There is but one 
w;iv to snst'i'iii reputation, riz., to increaae it: 
and the memory of pest glories becomes dim 
unless it be constantly refreshed by new. It, 
must also be borne in mind that the mari- 
time habits of the people bad called a new 
class into existence in the councils of ti. 

The seamen, the most democratic part of the 
population, were now to be conciliated and 
consulted ; it was requisite to keep them in ac- 
tion, for they were turbulent — in employment, 
for they were poor : and thus the domestic 
policy and the foreign interests of Athens alike 
conspired to necessitate the prosecution of mari- 
time enterprise. 

XXI. No longer harassed and impeded by 
fears of an enemy in the Peloponnesus, the 
lively imagination of the people readily turned 
to more dazzling and profitable warfare. The 
island of Cyprus had (we have seen) before at- 
tracted the ambition of the mistress of the/Egaean. 



Its possesion was highly advantageous, whether book 

for military or commercial design*, ami oner -mb- ( {{KV 
jeeted, the fleet of the Athenians might readily ^ 
retain the dominion. Divided into nine petty 
states, governed not by republican but monarchi- 
cal institutions, the forces of the island wen- dis- 
tracted, and the whole proffered an easy a< well 

us glorious conquest ; while the attempt took the 
plausible shape of deliverance, Inasmuch as Per- 
sia, despite the former successes of Cimon, still 
arrogated the supremacy ow the island, and 

the war was in fact less against Cyprus than 
against Persia. Cimon, who ever affected great 

and brilliant enterprises, and whose main polie\ 
it was to keep the Athenians from the dangemu> 

borders of the Peloponnesus, hastened to ceeaent 

the truce he had formed with the States of that 

district, by directing the spirit of enterprise to 
the conquest of Cyprus. 

Invested with the command of two hundred is. 1 
gallies, he set sail for that island.* But designs 
more vast were associated with this enterprise. 
The objects of the late Egyptian expedition still 
tempted, and sixty vessels of the fleet were de- 
spatched to Egypt to th tnce of Amyi neus, 
wdio, yet unconquered, in the marshy regions, 
sustained the revolt against the Persian king. 
* Thucyd. lib. i. 118. 

374 ati 1 1 . 

boqi Artabazua commanded the Persian fore.-, and 

I V. 

with a fleet of three hundred ressels. he ran 


iv. himself in sight of Cyprus, Olmon, howerer, 
landing on the island, succeeded in capturing 

many of its principal towns. Humbled and de- 
feated, it wai not the policy of Persia to continue 
hostilities with an enemy from whom it lm 
much to fear, and so little to gain. It i- not, th< 
fore, altogether an Improbable account of the 
later authorities, that ambassadors with propo- 
tali of peace were formally despatched toAth 
But we mu-t reject as a pure (able ti, ions 

that a treaty was finally agreed upon, by which it 
was decreed, on the one hand, that the inde- 
pendence of the Asiatic Greek towns should be 
acknowledged, and that the Persian general- 
should not advance within three days' march of 
the Grecian seas ; nor should a Persian vessel 
sail within the limit of Phaselis and the Cyanean 
rocks ; while, on the other hand, the Athe- 
nians were bound not to enter the territories of 
Artaxerxes.* No such arrangement was known 
to Thucydides ; no reference is ever made to such 
a treaty in subsequent transactions with Persia. 

* Diod. lib. xi. Plut. in vit. Cim. Heeren. Manual of 
Ancient History; but Mr. Mitford and Mr. Thirlwall pro- 
perly reject this spurious treaty. 


A document, professing to be a copy of this BOOK 
treaty, was long extant; but it was undoubtedly 
the offspring of a weak credulity, or an ingenious nr. 
invention. But while negotiations, if ever ac- 
tually commenced, were yet pending, Cimon 
was occupied in the siege of Citium, \% 1 1 > 
(amine conspired with the obstinacy of the be- 
sieged to protract the success of his arms. It 
is recorded among the popular legends of the 
day that Cimon # sent a secret mission to 
the oracle of Jupiter Amnion. " Return," was 
the response to the messengers; ''Cimon is 
with me !" The messengers did return to find 
the son of Miltiades \\;i- no more. He expired 
during the blockade of Citium. By his order- U 
his death was eonoealtdj the sic. d, and 

still under the magic of Cimon 's name, the 
Athenians engaging the Phoenician* and Cili- 

cians off the Cyprian Salainis, obtained signal 
victories both by land and sea. Thence, joined 
by the squadron despatched to Egypt, which, if 
it did not share, did not retrieve, the misfortune- 
of the previous expedition, they returned home. 
The remains of Cimon were interred in Athena, 
and the splendid monument consecrated to his 
name was visible in the time of Plutarch. 

* Pint, in Ciai. 




111)1 III! l'IR.M\N UAH. INI) mi INTIMATE 

I LATIL1 \cyi 1KKD hv ATHDfl nil nt\v>it.K Of 
mi: iiiiusi n \\:<>\\ DBUM i<» aiiiiins i.vieni DAK 

and i. mi mi: \iuiiki\i. namnii ot \iih.s> 

PfJUflOlOUl reliance OH i in in n. thirdly, detekiorx 

(if HtUm AND PUBLIC TABLES KM HI III.'*, Dl.H.t l> IS l'<» 

book I. Before we pass to the administration of Pe- 
iv. . 

ricles, — a period so brilliant in the history not 

chap. ' r J 

v. more of Athens than of Art, — it may not be nn- 
B.C.449. seasonable to take a brief survey of the progress 
which the Athenians had already made in civili- 
sation and power. 

The Comedians and the Rhetoricians, when 


at a later period they boldly represented to the hook 
democracy, in a mixture of satire and of truth, 


the more displeasing features of tin- popular \. 
character, delighted to draw a contrast between 
the new times and the old. The generation of 
men whom Marathon and Salamis had immor- 
talised, were, according to these praisers of the 
past, of nobler manners and more majestie virtu* - 
than their degenerate descendants. " Tin 
exclaimed Isoerates, "our young men did not 
waste their days in the gambling-house, nor with 
music-girls, nor in the assemblies, in which 

whole days are now consumed then 

did they shim the Agora, or if they pa— ed 

through its haunts, it was with modest and 
timorous forbearance — then, to contradict an 
elder was a greater offence than oow-a-daya to 

offend a parent -then, not even I MfTant of 
honest repute would have been lean to rat or 
drink within a tavern!" "In the good old 
times," says the citizen of Aristophanes,* •• our 
youths breasted the snow without a mantle — 
their musie was masculine and martial — their 
gymnastic exercises decorous and chaste. Thus 
were trained the heroes of Marathon I" 

In such happy days we are informed that men- 
dicancy and even want were unknown.')" 

* The Clouds. f Isoc. Areop. 38. 


U7H mm 

,.,„, K If. is scan-.-ly ncn tliat \s e 

must accept these comparison! between a 

™vj r ' ami another witli considerable caution ami fructi- 
fication. We are too much accustomed to men 
declamation! in our own time not t<» recognise an 
ordinary trick of eUlriata ami declaim* I 
long SI a people can bear patientlv to hear their 
own errors end follies scornfully proclaimed, tluv 

have not become altogether dege ner ate or corrupt 

Yet still, making every allowance for rhetorical 
or poetic exaggeration, it is not more evident 
than natural that the luxury of civilisation— tin 
fervour of unbridled competition, in pleasun 
in toil — were attended with many chai 
manners and life favourable to art and intelli 
but hostile to the stern hardihood of a former 

II. But the change was commenced, not under 
a democracy but under a tyranny — it was con- 
summated not by the vices but the virtues of the 
nation. It began with the Pisistratidae,* who 
first introduced into Athens the desires of plea- 
sure and the habits of ostentation, that refine be- 
fore they enervate ; — and that luxury, which, as 
in Athenaeus it is well and profoundly said, is of- 
ten the concomitant of freedom, " as soft couches 
took their name from Hercules" — made its rapid 
progress with the result of the Persian war. 

* Idomen. ap. Athen. lib. xii. 



The plunder of Plataea, the luxuries of By/an- '; 
tium, were not limited in their effect to the wild ()1 u> 
Pausanias. The decay of old and the rite of _^_ 
new families tended to give a stimulus to tin- 
emulation of wealth — since it is by wealth that 
new families seek to eclipse the old. And e\ » M 
the destruction of private houses, in the ravages 
of Mardonius, served to quicken the career of art. 
In rebuilding their mansions the nobles natu- 
rally availed themselves of the treasures and the 
appliances of the gorgeous enemy they had van- 
quished and despoiled. Few eref rebuild theft 
houses on as plain a scale as the old ones. In 
the city itself the residences of the «j,reat remained 
plain and simple ; they were mostly built of 
plaster and unburnt brick, and we are told that 
the houses of Cimon and Perietal were scarcely 
distinguishable from those of the other citizens. 
But in their villas in Attica, in which the Athe- 
nians took a passionate delight, they exhibited 
their taste and displayed their wealth.* And the 
lucrative victories of Cimon, backed by his own 
example of ostentation, gave to a vast number 
of families, hitherto obscure, at once the power 
to gratify luxury and the desire to parade re- 
finement. Nor was the Eastern example more 
productive of emulation than the Ionian. The 
Persian war, and the league which followed it, 
* Thucyd. lib. ii. 16 ; Uoc. Areopag. c xx. p. 234. 

in \r. 

380 • miii.n 

hook brouerhl Athens into the closest intercourse with 
i\ . 

her graceful but voluptuous colonies. Miletus 

fell, but the mannert of Miletus survived her li- 
berties. Thai city wmm reno* Bed for tin- peculiar 

grace ami intellectual influence of it- iron* 
mid it i> evident that there mu-t have been a 
gradual change of domestic habits ami tin- for- 
mation of ;i Dew clan of female society in .\tli 
before Aepaeia could have summon< d around her 
the power and the \\ isdom and the m it of Ath( 
— before an accomplished mistreat could hi 
been even inspected of urging the politic Peri- 
cles into war — and, above all, before an Athe* 
nian audience could have assented in delight 
that mighty innovation on their masculine drama 
— which is visible in the ]>;i->ionate heroine- and 
the sentimental pathos of Euripides. 

But this change was probably not apparent in 
the Athenian matrons themselves, who remained 
for the most part in primitive seclusion ; and 
though, I think, it will be shown hereafter that 
modern writers have greatly exaggerated both 
the want of mental culture and the degree of 
domestic confinement to which the Athenian 
women were subjected,* yet it is certain, at least, 
that they did not share the social freedom nor 
partake the intellectual accomplishments of their 

* If we believe with Plutarch that wives accompanied 
their husbands to the house of Aspasia, (and it was c«r tainly 


lords. It was the new class of ' k Female Friends* 1 booi 


or " Hctaira" a phrase ill translated by the , , 
1 J ( HAP. 

term of " courtesans," (from whom they were v. 
indubitably, but not to our notions very intelli- 
gibly, distinguished,) that exhibited the rtn 
union of female blandishment and rnatcnluM 
culture. " The wife for our house and ho- 
nour/' implies Demosthenes, " the Hetera 
for our solace and delight." These extraordi- 
nary women, all foreigners, and mostly Ionian, 
made the main phenomenon of Athenian so- 
ciety. They were the only women with whom 
an enlightened Greek could converse at equal 

to himself in education. While the law denied 
them civil rights, usage Lavished upon them at 
Once admiration and respect. By Stealth, BJ it 
were, and in defiance of legislation, they intro- 
duced into the ambitious and restless circle- of 
Athens many of the effects, pernicious or be- 
neficial, which result from the influence of edu- 

a popular charge against Periclei that Aspaaia served to 
corrupt the Athenian matrons.) they could not have been so 
jealously confined as writers, judging from passages in the 
Greek writers that describe not what women ict/t, but what 
women ought tu rV, desire- us to imagine. And it may be also 
observed, that the popular anecdotes represent Klpiniceas a 
female intriguante, busying herself in politics and mediating 
between Cimon and Pericles; — anecdotes, whether or not they 
be strictly faithful, that at least tend to illustrate the state of 


book cated women upon the mannen ana pursuit 
iv. # 


\. III. The alteration of social hal - not 

then Midden and Btaftliogj such is never the i 
in the j of national manners, but, i qbi 

meneing with die graces of i poliehed tyrannj , 
ripened with the resulti of glorious but too pro- 
fitable nctories. Perhaps the time in which 

the statr af transition WM ino-t favourably \ i-ible 

was just prior to the death of Cimon. It 

not then so nmeh the over-refinement of a I 
atid feebler generation, as the jjoli-li and ele- 
gance which wealth, art, and emulation, m 
sarily imparted to the same brave warriors who 
exchanged posts with the Spartans at Plat 
and sent out their children and old men to fight 
and to conquer with Myronides. 

IV. A rapid glance over the events of the few 
years commemorated in the last book of this his- 
tory, will suffice to show the eminence which 
Athens had attained over the other states of 
Greece. She was the head of the Ionian League 
— the mistress of the Grecian seas ; with Sparta, 
the sole rival that could cope with her armies 

* As I propose, in a subsequent part of this work, to enter 
at considerable length into the social life and habits of the 
Athenians, I shall have full opportunity for a more detailed 
account of these singular heroines of Alciphron and the later 

( HAP. 

\ . 


and arrest her ambition, she bad obtained a BOOK 
peace ; Corinth was humbled — iEgina ruined — 
Megara had shrunk into her dependency and gar- 
rison. The states of Bceotia had received their 
very constitution from the hands of an Athenian 
general — the democracies planted by Athens 
served to make liberty itself subservient to her 
will, and involved in her safety. She had reme- 
died the sterility of her own soil by securing tin- 
rich pastures of the neighbouring EubcBS. She 
had added the gold of Thasos to the silver of Lau- 
rion, and established a footing in Thessalv wliieli 
was at once a fortress against the Asiatic arms 
and a mart for Asiatic commerce. The faiiv-t 
lands of the opposite coast — the mod powerful 
islands of the Grecian leai — contributed to her 
treasury, or were almost legally subjected to her 
revenge. Her navv was rapidly increasing in 
skill, in number, and renown ; at home tin- 
recal of Cimon had conciliated domestic conten- 
tions, and the death of Cimon dispirited for 
awhile the foes to the established constitution. 
In all Greece, Myronides was perhaps the abh-r 
general — Pericles (now rapidly rising to the 
sole administration of affairs,*) was undoubtedlv 

* It was about five years after the death of Cimon that 
Pericles obtained that supreme power which resembled a 
tyranny, but was only the expression and concentration of 
the democratic will. 


boor the most highly educated, cautious, and com« 
manding statesman. 


\. hut a singh art of inccessful faring bad 

more than all else contributed to the Athenian 
power. Even in tin; lifetime of Aristides it had 
been proposed to transfer the common treasury 

from Delos to Athens.* Tin- motion failed — 

perhaps through the virtuoui opposition of 
Aristides himself. But when, at the liegi 
[thom'e*, the feud between the Athenians and 
Spartans broke out, the fairest pretext and t > * • - 
most favoural >lc occasion conspired in favour of 
I measure so seductive to the national ambition. 
Under pretence of saving the treasury from tin- 
hazard of falling a prey to the Spartan rapacity 
or need, it was removed at once to Athens ;f and 
or 460. while the enfeebled power of Sparta, fully en- 
grossed by the Messenian war, forbade all resist- 
ance to the transfer, from that, the most formi- 
dable, quarter, the conquests of Naxos and the 
recent reduction of Thasos, seem to have intimi- 
dated the spirit, and for a time even to have 
silenced the reproaches, of the tributary states 
themselves. Thus in actual possession of the 
tribute of her allies, Athens acquired a new 
right to its collection and its management, 
and while she devoted some of the treasures to 

* Theophrast. ap. Plut. in vit. Per. 
f Justin, lib. iii. c. 6. 


the maintenance of her strength, she began early book 
to uphold the prerogative of appropriating a part 
to the enhancement of her splendour.* I ■ 

As this most important measure occurred at 

* For the transfer itself there we; | yet more 

plausible than that assigned by Justin. First, in the \ 
following the breach between the 8j 1 Athenians, 

(b/c. 460,) probably the same year in which the tran 
was effected, the Athenian! were again at war with the 
great king, in Egypt; and there was therefore a shot 
justice in the argument noticed by Boeckh, (though in the 
source whence he derives it, the argument applies to the 
earlier time of Aristides,) that the transfer provided a place 
of greater security against the B ar b a ri mdly. Delos 

itself was already, and had long been, under Athenian in- 
fluence. Pisistratut had made a purification of the island, 1 
Delian soothsayers had predicted to Athens tin _:itv 

of tin and the Athenians seem to have arrogated a 

right of interference with the temple. The transfer was 
probably, therefore, in appearance, little more than a trans- 
fer from a place under the power of Athens to Athens 
itself. Thirdly, it set. ins that when the question was I 
agitated, during the life of Aristtdes, it was at the deailt 
one of the allies themselves (the Samians.) J 

1 Herod, lib. i. c. 54. 

a Semius Delius ap. Athen. viii. 

' Pint, in vit. Aristid. Boeckh (vol. i. 135. translation,) 
has no warrant for supposing that Pericles influenced the 
Sarniana in the expression of this wish, — because Plutarch re- 
fers the story to the time of Aristides. during whose life 
Pericles possessed no influence in public affairs. 

•i^G Aran 

book the very period irhen thi power of Cimoo was 

weakened l>v the humiliating circumstances that 


\. attended his expedition to Ithorae, and by the 
rigorous and popular measures of the opposition, 
so there seems even to beliere thai it 

was principally advised and effected by P 
who appears shortly afterwardj presiding ovei 
the administration of* the finances.* 

Though the Athenian commerce had 
increased, it was >till principally confined to the 
Thracian coasts and the Black The d< 

of enterprises, too vast for a stai 
reverses might suddenly desti I in- 

dulged to excess ; nor had the turbulent spirits 
of the Piraeus yet poured in, upon the various 
harriers of the social state and the political con- 
stitution, the rashness of sailors and the avarice 
of merchants. Agriculture, to which all alas 
in Athens were addicted, raised a healthful 
counteraction to the impetus given to trade. 
Nor was it till some years afterwards, when Pe- 
ricles gathered all the citizens into the town, 
and left no safety-valve to the ferment and 
vices of the Agora — that the Athenian aristo- 

* The assertion of Dipdorus, (lib. xii. 38,) that to Pericles 
was confided the superintendence and management of the 
treasure, is corroborated by the anecdotes in Plutarch and 
elsewhere, which represent Pericles as the principal admi- 
nistrator of the funds. 


cracy gradually lost all patriotism and manhood, n<> 
and an energetic democracy was corrupted into 
a vehement though educated mob. 1 he spirit v. 
of faction, it is true, ran high, but a third 
party, headed by Myronides and Tolinid 
checked the excesses of either extreme. 

V. Thus, at home and abroad, time and 
fortune, the concurrence of treats, and the 
happy accident of great men, not only main- 
tained the present eminence of Athens, but pro- 
mised, to ordinary foresight, a long duration 
of her glory and her power. To deeper tbf 

, the picture might have presented dim, but 
prophetic shadows. It was deal that the com- 
mand Athens had obtained was utterly dispro- 
portioned to her natural resources — that her 
greatness was altogether artificial, and rested 
partly upon moral rather than physical eauses, 
and partly upon the fears and the weakness of her 
neighbours. A sterile soil, a limited territory, 
a scanty population — all these — the drawbaeks 
and disadvantages of nature — the wonderful 
energy and confident daring of a free state 
might conceal in prosperity ; but the first cala- 
mity could not fail to expose them to jealous and 
hostile eyes. The empire delegated to the 
Athenians, they must naturally desire to retain 
and to increase ; and there was every reason to 

c c 2 



booi forebode that their ambition would soon ex 

their capacities to sustain it. As the state be- 
v - came accustomed to it- power, it would lean to 
abuse it. Eiicreasing civilisation, luxury, and art, 
brought with them new expenses, and Ath 
had already been permitted to indulge with 
impunity the dangerous passion of exacting tri- 
bute from bar neighbours. Dependence npon 
other resources than those of the native popula- 
tion lias ever been ■ main cause <>f the destine* 
tion of despotisms and it cannot fail, sooner or 
later, to be equally pernicious to the republics 
that trust to it. The resources of taxation 
confined to freemen and natives, are almost in- 
calculable ; the resources of tribute wrung from 
foreigners and dependents, are sternly limited and 
terribly precarious — they rot away the true spirit 
of industry in the people that demand the im- 
post — they implant ineradicable hatred in the 
states that concede it. 

VI. Two other causes of great deterioration 
to the national spirit were also at work in Athens. 
One, as I have before hinted, was the policy 
commenced by Cimon, of winning the populace 
by the bribes and exhibitions of individual 
wealth. The wise Pisistratus had invented pe- 
nalties — Cimon offered encouragement — to idle- 
ness. When the poor are once accustomed to 


believe they have a right to the generosity of hook 

the rich, the first deadly inroad is made upon 

. . CHAP, 

the energies of independence and the sane- v. 

tity of property. A yet more pernicious evil in 
the social state of the Athenians was radical 
in their constitution, — it was their couin of 
justice. Proceeding upon a theory that ffiutl 
have seemed specious and plausible to an iin 
perienced and infant republic, Solon had laid it 
down as a principle of his code, that as all men 
were Interested in the preservation of law, so 
all men might exert the privilege of the plain- 
till' and accuser. As society grew more com- 
*plicated, the door was thus opened t<> every 
species of vexatious charge and frivolous litiga- 
tion. The common informer became a n 
harassing and powerful pei>onage, and made I 
of a fruitful and crowded profession : and in 
the very capital of liberty there existed the worst 
species of espionage. But justice was not thereby 
facilitated. The informer w uded with 

universal hatred and contempt ; and it is easy to 
perceive, from the writings of the great comic 
poet, that the sympathies of the Athenian audi- 
ence were, as those of the English public at this 
day, enlisted against the man who brought the 
inquisition of the law to the hearth of his neigh- 


book VII. Solon committed ;i ital and 


incurable error when lie earned tin- democi 

CHAP. .... ...... . ,, . . , 

v. pnnciple into judicial tribunals. He evidently 
con>i<l<'ivil that the very itrength and life of his 
constitution rested iii the ll 
numbers and nature of which have been alr< 
described. Perhaps, at i time irhen the old 
oligarchy i bo formidable, it might have 

been difficult to secure justice to tin- po 
classes, while the judges were selected from the 
wealthier. Hut justice to all cl 
\ t more capricious uncertainty \\Ie it of 

law resembled a popular hustings.* 

If we entrust a wide political sul 
the people, the people at least hold no trust for 
others than themselves and their posterity — they 
are not responsible to the public, for they are the 
public. But in law, where there are two parties 
concerned, the plaintiff and defendant, the judge 
should not only be incorruptible, but stricth 
sponsible. In Athens the people became the 

* The political nature and bias of the Heliaea is apparent 
in the very oath, preserved in Demost. con. Tim. p. 746, ed. 
Iteiske. In this the heliast is sworn never to vote for the 
establishment of tyranny or oligarchy Ln Athens, and never 
to listen to any proposition tending to destroy the democratic 
constitution. That is, a man entered upon a judicial tribunal 
by taking a political oath ! 


judge ; and, in offences punishable by fine, were nook 

the very party interested in procuring condem- 
nation ; the numbers of the jury prevented all i J. 
sponsibility, excused all abuses, and made them 
susceptible of the same ihameleM excesses that 
characterise self-elected corporations — from which 
appeal is idle, and over which public opinion 
exercises no controul. These numerous, igno- 
rant, and passionate assemblies, were liable at 
all times to the heats of party, to the eloquence 
of individuals— to the whims, and caprices, the 
prejudices, the impatience, and the turbulen 
which must ever be the characteristics of a mul- 
titude orally addressed. It was evident also that 
from service in such a court, the wealthy, the 
eminent, and the learned, with other occupation 

or amusement, would booo seek to absent them- 
selves. And the final blow to the integrity and 
respectability of the popular judicature was given 

at a later period by Pericles, when he instituted 
a salary, just sufficient to tempt the poor and to 
be disdained by the affluent, to every dicast or 
juryman in the ten ordinary courts.* Legal 
science became not the profession of the erudite 

* These courts have been likened to modern juries ; but 
they were very little bound by the i'orms and precedents 
which shackle the latter. What a jury, even now-a-days, a 
jury of only twelve persons., would be if left entirely to impulse 

<*!)2 ATHENS I 

<>k and the laborious few. I>ut the livelihood of the 
i \ . 

noranf and i« 1 1« • multitude. The canvassing — 
( ■ 1 1 \ i' 
\ . the « ajoling the bi ih ry— that resulted 

this, the moat \ i« ion-, institution of the Athenian 
democracy— art bul too evident and melancholy 
tokens of the imperfection of human wisdom. 
Life, property, and character, were at the hazard 
of a popular election. These evils must have 
been long in progressive operation ; but perhaps 
they were scarcely s isible till the fatal innovation 
of Pericles, and the flagrant ea that en- 

sued, allowed the people themselves to Listen to 
the branding and terrible satire upon the popular 
judicature, which is still preserved to ui in the 
comedy of Aristopham ». 

At the same time, certain critics and historians 
have widely and grossly erred in supposing that 
these courts of " the sovereign multitude " were 
partial to the poor and hostile to the rich. All 
testimony proves that the fact was lamentably the 
reverse. The defendant was accustomed to en- 
gage the persons of rank or influence whom he 

and party feeling, any lawyer will readily conceive. How 
much more capricious, uncertain, and prejudiced, a jury of 
five hundred, and, in some instances, of one thousand or fif- 
teen hundred! ' 

1 By the junction of two or more divisions, as in cases of 
Eisangelia. Poll. viii. 53 and 123; also Tittman. 


might number as his friends, to appear in court book 
on his behalf. And property WM employed to 
procure at the bar of justice the suflVa^ uld v. 

command at a political election. '1 lit- greal 

nee of the democratic Heliaea was, that by a line 
the wealthy could purchase pardon — by intu 
the great could soften law. lint the chain 
were against the poor man. To him litigation 
was indeed cheap, but justiee dear. He had 

much the same inequality to struggle against in 
a suit with a powerful antagonist, that he would 
have had in contesting with him for an oiiiee in 
the administration, in all trials resting on the 
voice of popular assemblies it ever has been and 

ever will be found, that, mtuis /xiribus, the 
Aristocrat will defeat the I'hlnian. 

VIII. Meanwhile the p r ogr e ss of general edu- 
cation had been great and remarkable. .Music,* 
from the earliest time, was an essential part of 
instruction ; and it had now become sooonunon 
an acquirement, that Ari-totle-j observes, that 
the close of the Persian war there was scarcely a 

* " Designed by our ancestors," says Aristotle, (Pol. lib. 
viii. c. 3,) •• not, as many now consider it, merely tor delight, 
but lor discipline ; that so the mind might be taught not only 
how honourably to pursue business, but how creditably to 
enjoy leisure ; for such enjoyment is, alter all, the end of 
business and the boundary of active life." 

-J- See Aristot. (Pol. lib. viii. e. 6.) 

.'i!)4 ATHENS : 

book tingle free-born Athenian unacquainted with the 

flute The Die ot this instrument was aft 
\. " discontinued, and indeed proscribed in the < 

cation of fremiti), from the notion that it was not 
an instrument capable of music sufficiently 
vated ;m<l intellectual;* yet it wasonb ded 

by melodies more effeminate and Luxurious* And 
Aristophanes enumerates the change from the old 
national airs ami measures, among th( mp- 

toms of Athenian degeneracy. Besi< mu- 

sician, the tutor of the gymnasium ami the gram- 
marian still made the nominal limit of scbok 
instruction. f But lite itself had now become a 
school. The passion lor public intercourse and 
disputation, which the gardens and the Agora, 
and exciting events, and free institutions, and 
the rise of philosophy, and a serene and lovely 
climate, made the prevalent characteristic of the 
matured Athenian, began to stir within the young. 
And in the meanwhile the tardy invention of 
Prose Literature worked its natural revolution in 
intellectual pursuits. 

IX. It has been before observed, that in 

* An anecdote in Gellius, lib. xv. c. 17, refers the date 
of the disuse of this instrument to the age of Pericles and 
during the boyhood of Alcibiades. 

t Drawing was subsequently studied as a branch of edu- 
cation essential to many of the common occupations of life 


Greece, as elsewhere, the first successor of the HOOK 


poet was the philosopher, and that the oral lee- 
turer preceded the prose writer. With written I 
prose history commenced. Having found a 
mode of transmitting that species of knowledge 
which could not, like rhythmical tales or senten- 
tious problems, be accurately preserved by the 
memory alone, it was natural that a present age 
should desire to record and transmit the past — 
KiJipa «c mi,— an everlasting heirloom to the 

To a semi-barbarous nation history is little 
more than poetry. The subjects to whieh it 
Mould be naturally devoted are the I - of 

religion — the deeds of auee-tral demigods — the 
triumphs of successful war. In recording tie 
themes of national interest, the port is the fir-t 
historian. As philosophy — or rather the spirit 
of conjecture, which is the primitive and ei< 
tive breath of philosophy — becomes prevalent, 
the old credulity directs the new research to the 
in \ estimation of subjects which the poets have not 
•efficiently explained, but which, from their re- 
mote and religious antiquity, are mysteriously 
attractive to a reverent and inquisitive popula- 
tion, with whom long descent is vet the most 
flattering proof of superiority. Thus genea- 
logies, and accounts of the origin of states and 



nook deities, made flic first subjects of history, and 
inspired tin- Argive Acusilaus,* and, 
\. we can plausibly conjecture, the -Mil 

\. The Dorians— a people who never d< 
to disturb tradition, anwilling carefully to in 
tigate, precisely because thej superstitiousl) \ • 
rated, the Past, Little inquisitive as to the man 
or the chronicles of alien tribes, d, in a word, 

with themselves, and incurious "there — 

were not a race to whom history became a want. 
Ionia — the subtle, the innovating, the anxii 
and the restless— nurse of tlie arts, which 
mother country ultimately reared, boasts in 
Cadmus the Milesian the first writer of history 
and of prose ;| Samos, the birth place of Pytha- 
goras, produced Eugeon, placed by Dionj 
at the head of the early historians ; and Mitylene 
claimed Hellanicus, who seems to have formed a 
more ambitious design than his pred< 
He wrote a history of the ancient kings of the 
earth, and an account of the founders of the most 
celebrated cities in each kingdom. £ During the 
early and crude attempts of these and other 

* Suid. 

t Hecataeus was also of Miletus. 

% Pausan. ii. c. 3 ; Cic, de Orat. ii. c. 53 ; Aulus Gellius, 
xv. c. 23. 


writers, stern events contributed to rear from hook 

i v 
tedious research and fruitless conjecture the 


true genius of History ; for it is as B people v. 
begin to struggle for rights, to comprehend 
political relations, to contend with neighbour!! 
abroad, and to wrestle with obnoxious institu- 
tions at home, that they desire to secure the 
sanction of antiquity, to trace back to some 
illustrious origin the rights they demand, and 
to stimulate hourly exertions by a refer. 1 
to departed fame. Then do mythologies, and 
genealogies, and geographical definitions, and 
the traditions that concern kings ami heroes, 
ripen into chronicles that commemorate the 
convulsions or the pro. a nation. 

During the stormy period which -aw the in- 
vasion of Xerxes, when everything that could 
shed lustre upon the past, incited t<> proent h.c. 480. 
struggles, flourished Pherecydea. He it some- 
times called of Leria, which seems hi- birth- 
place — sometime- of Athens, where he resided 
thirty years, and to which state his history re- 
ferred. Although his work was principally my- 
thological, it opened the way to sound historical 
composition, inasmuch as it included references 
to later times— to existent struggles— the descent 
of Miltiades — the Scythian expedition of Da- 

398 ATI. 

book riu-. Subsequently, Xanthus, ■ Lydi 

poted a work on his own country, of which - 
\ extracts remain, and from which II 
b.c. i63. not disdain to bow 

XI. It was nearly a century niter tip 
vcntioii of prose, and of historical composition, 
and with the guides and exaraplea of many 
writers, not uncelebrated in their day, befora 
Ma emulation, that Heroddtus lir.-t made km 
to the Grecian public, and i all pro- 

bible evidence, at tie- Olympic games, a portion 
of that work Which drew forth tin Thin \ - 

dides, and furnished the imperishable model of 
picturesque and faithful narrative. This hap- 
pened in a brilliant period of Athenian hi-tory ; 
it was in the same year as the battle of QSno- 
phyta, when Athens gave laws and constitu* 
tions to Boeotia, and the recal of Cimon 
tablished for herself both liberty and order. 
The youth of Herodotus was passed while the 
glory of the Persian war yet lingered over 
Greece, and while with the ascendancy of Athens 
commenced a new aera of civilisation. His genius 
drew the vital breath from an atmosphere of poe- 
try. The desire of wild adventure still existed, 
and the romantic expedition of the Athenians into 
Egypt had served to strengthen the connexion 


between the Greeks and that imposing and in- MOI 
teresting land. The rise of the Greek drama eRA¥ 
with iEschylus, probably contributed to give v - 
effect, colour, and vigour to the style of Herodo; 
And something almost of the art of tl: m- 

poraneous Sophocles, may be traced in the. efl 
skill of his narratives, and the magic yet tranquil 
energy of his descriptions. 

XII. Though Dorian by ancient descent, it 
was at Ilalicarnassus, in Carta, a city of Asfti 
Minor, that Herodotus was born ; nor does his 
style, nor do his views, indicate that he derived 
from the origin of his family any of the Dorian 
peculiarities. His parents were distinguished 
alike by birth and fortune. Early in life tie 
internal commotions, to which all t! ian 

towns were Subjected, and which crushed for a 
time the liberties of his native city, drove him 
from Halicarnassus : and, suffering from tyrannv, 
he became inspired by that enthusiasm for fa 
dom which burns throughout his immortal 
work. During his exile he travelled through 
Greece, Thrace, and Macedonia, — through 
Scythia, Asia, and Egypt. Thus he collected 
the materials of his work, which is, in fact, a 
book of travels narrated historically. If we do 
not reject the story that he read a portion of his 
work at the Olympian games, when Thucydides, 

-400 ATHStri : 

book one of his listeners, wasyel a I -up- 

,,,,,, pose the latter to have been about i this 

v - an ret lot i • i- calculated 4 to bear the date of Olym. 
81, n.( . 456, when Herodotus was twenty-eight. 
The chief rendenee of Herodotus was at 
Samoa, until a revolution broke out in Hali- 
oarnassus. The people conspired against their 
tyrant Lygdamis. Herodotus repaired to his 
native city, took a prominent part in the i 
spiracy, and finally succeeded in restoring the 
popular government. He was not, li" 
long left to enjoy the liberties he had assisted to 
acquire tor hii fellow-citizens : some intrigi 
the counter-party drove him a second time into 
exile. Repairing to Athens, he read the con- 
tinuation of his history at the festival of the 

B.c.446. Panathenaea. It was received with the most rap- 
turous applause ; and we are told that the people 
solemnly conferred upon the man who had im- 
mortalized their achievements against the Mede, 
the gift of ten talents. The disposition of this 
remarkable man, like that of all travellers, in- 
clined to enterprise and adventure. His early 
wanderings, his later vicissitudes, seem to have 
confirmed a temperament originally restless and 
inquisitive. Accordingly, in his forty-first year, 

B.C. 443. he joined the Athenian emigrators that in 

* Fast. Hell. vol. ii. 


tlio south of Italy established a colony at BOOI 
Thuriuin. ■ ■■■■ 

XIII. At Thurium, Herodotus apparently v. 
passed the remainder of his life, though, whe- 
ther his tomb was built there or in Athens, 
is a matter of dispute. These particulars of 
his life, not uninteresting in themselves, tend 
greatly to illustrate the character of his writing 
Their charm consists in the earnestness of a 
man who describes countries as an eye-witm 
and events as one accustomed to participate in 
them. The life, the raciness, the vigour of an 
adventurer and a wanderer, glow in every pa_ 
He has none of the refining disquisitions that 
are born of the closet. He paints history] 
rather than descants on it ; he throws the co- 
lourings of a mind, unconsciously poetic, owr 
all he describes. Now a soldier — now a priest — 
now a patriot — he is always a poet, if rarely ■ 
philosopher, lie narrates like a witness, unlike 
Thucydides, who sums up like a judge, 
writer ever made so beautiful an application of 
superstitions to truths. His very credulities 
have a philosophy of their own ; and modern 
historians have acted unwisely in disdaining the 
occasional repetition even of his fables. For if 
his truths record the events — his fables paint the 


402 ATii; 

■ooi manners and the opinion- of the tine ; and the 
i \ 

last fill up the history, of which cveni mly 

l . the skeleton. 

To account for hi- frequent ate of dialogue, and 
liis dramatic effects of narrative, we must remem- 
ber the trihnnal to which the work of Herod 
was subjected. Every author, unconscious] 
himself, consults tin- tastes of those he addret 
No small coterie of scholars, no scrupulous ami 
critical inquirers, made the ordeal Herod 
underwent. His chronicles were not disserta- 
tions to be coldly pondered over, and -opti- 
cally conned : they were read aloud at -oleum 
festivals to listening thousands : they wn j 
arrest the curiosity — to amuse the impatience — 
to stir the wonder of a lively and motley crowd. 
Thus the historian imbibed naturally the spirit 
of the tale-teller. And he was driven to em- 
bellish his history with the romantic legend — the 
awful superstition — the gossip anecdote — which 
yet characterise the stories of the popular and oral 
fictionist, in the bazaars of the Mussulman, or 
on the sea-sands of Sicily. Still it has been 
rightly said, that a judicious reader is not easily 
led astray by Herodotus in important particulars. 
His descriptions of localities, of manners and 
of customs, are singularly correct ; and modern 
travellers can yet trace the vestiges of his fide- 


lity. As the historian, therefore, was in some lOOK 

. IT. 

measure an orator, so his skill was tobemanit 

. ( HAP. 

in the arts which keep alive tin- attention of \. 
an audience. Hence Herodotus continually 
aims at the picturesque ; he gives us the vim \ 
words of his actors, and narrates the secrets of 
impenetrable palaces with as much simplicity 
and earnestness, as if lie had been pltC 
behind the arras. That it was impossible for tin* 
wandering Halicarnassian to know what Gyj 

* A brilliant writer in the Edinburgh rXeriew, (Mr. Mac- 
auley,) would account for the um of dialogue in Herodotuj 

by the childish simplicity common to an early and art 
age— as the boor always unconsi iuusly resorts to the dra- 
matic form of narration, and relate* Hi Her] I 
"Says lu's" anil "aejl Pa." Hut does not Mr. Macau 
in common with many otln i tar too much on the 

artlessness of the age, and the unstudied simplicity of the 
writer : Though History itself was young, Art was already 
at its zenith. It was the age of Sophocles, Phidias, and 
Pericles. It was from the Athenians in their most polished 
period, that Herodotus received the most rapturous applause. 
Do not all accounts of Herodotus, as a writer, assure us that he 
spent the greater part of a long life in composing, polishing, 
and perfecting his history ; and is it not more in conformit} 
with the characteristic spirit of the times, and the masterly 
effects which Herodotus produces, to conclude, that what 
we suppose to be artlessness, was, in reality, the preme- 
ditated elaboration of art ? 

I) l) 'J 



hook said to Candaulcs. or Artabanus to \ 
i\ . 

bag, perhaps, been too confidently asserted. 

v. Heeren remind! OS, that both l>v Jewish and 
Grecian writers, there ii frequent mention of 
the Scribes, or Secr eta ries, p ho constantly at- 
tended the person of the Persian monarch- on 

occasion of festival-.* of public reviews,"! and 
even in the tumult of battle : and, with tin- ido- 
latrous respect in which despotism was held. 
noted down tin- word- that fell from the royal lip. 
The ingenious German then proceed! to show that 
this custom was common to all the Asiatic nations. 
Thus were formed the chronicles, or archives, of 
the Persians ; and by reference to these minute 
and detailed documents, Herodotus was enabled 
to record conversations and anecdotes, and pre- 
serve to us the memoirs of a court. And though 
this conjecture must be received with caution, 
and, to many passages unconnected with Persia 
or the East, cannot be applied, it is sufficiently 
plausible, in some very important parts of the 
history, not to be altogether dismissed with con- 

But it is for another reason, that I have occa- 
sionally admitted the dialogues of Herodotus, as 

* Esther iii. 12; viii. 9. Ezra vi. 1. 
f Herod, vii. 100. 


well as the superstitious anecdotes current at the book 
day. The truth of history consists, not only in the 
relation of events, but in preserving the character v - 
of the people and depicting the manners of the 
time. Facts, if too nakedly told, may be very 
different from truths, in the impression tl. 
convey ; and the spirit of Grecian history is I 
if we do not feel the Greeks themselves constantly 
before us. Thus when, as in Herodotus, the 
agents of events converse, every word reported 
may not have been spoken ; but what we In 
in accuracy of details we more than gain by the 
fidelity of the whole. We acquire a lively and 
curate impression of the general character — of the 
thoughts and the manners ami the men of the 
age and the land. It is so also with legends, 
sparingly used, and of which the nature is dis- 
cernible from fact, by the most superficial 
gaze ; we more sensibly feel that it was the 
Greeks who were engaged at Marathon, when 
we read of the dream of llippias, or the 
apparition of Theseus. Finally, an histo- 
rian of Greece will, almost without an effort, 
convey to the reader a sense of the mighty 
change, from an age of poetical heroes to an 
age of practical statesmen, if he suffer Hero- 
dotus to be his model in the narrative of the 



BOOK Persian war, and allow the BON profound and 
( . |lu , less imaginative Thueydidei to colour the 
v - tures of the Peloponneaian. 

XIV. The period now entered upon is also 
remerfcabU far the fertile and rapid d 
nit.'iit of one branch of intellectual cultiration, 
in which the Qreeki irere pre-eminently illus- 
trious. In History, Rome wai me rival of 
Greeoe; in Philosophy, Rome was Dover moH 
man her enedoiotia and rewerenl scholar. 

We liavo scon me dawn of Philosophy with 
Tliales; Miletus, his birth-place, bore his im- 
mediate successors. Anaximander, hifl younger 
contemporary,* is said, with Pherecydef 
have been the first philosopher who availed him- 
self of the invention of writing. His sen 
have not been sufficiently appreciated — like 
those of most men who form the first steps in 
the progress between the originator and the 
perfector. He seems boldly to have differed 
from his master, Thales, in the very root of his 
system. He rejected the original element of 
water or humidity, and supposed the great pri- 
mary essence and origin of creation, to be in 
that everything or nothing which he called 
the infinite, and which we might perhaps 
* About twenty-nine years younger. Fast. Hell. vol. ii. p. 7. 


render as "The Chaos ;"*— that of this vast book 
element, the parts are changed— the whole im- 
mutable, and all things arise from and return V; 
unto that universal source. t He pursued his 

arches into physics, and attempted to I 
count for the thunder, the lightning, and Un- 
winds. His conjectures are usually shrewd and 
keen ; and sometimes, as in his assertion, " that 
the moon shone in light borrowed from the sun," 
may deserve a higher praise. Both Anaximan- 
der and Pherecydes concurred in the prin- 
ciples of their doctrines, but the latter seems to 
have more distinctly asserted the immortality 
of the soul, j 

Anaximenes, also of Miletus, was the friend b.c.548. 
and follower of Anaximander. He IMM^ how- 
ever, to have deserted the abstract philosophical 
dogmas of his tutor, and to have resumed the 
analogical system commenced by Thales — like 
that philosopher, he founded axioms upon ob- 
servations, bold and acute, but partial and con- 
tracted. He maintained that air was the primi- 
tive element. In this theory he united the 
Zeus, or ether, of Pherecydes, and the Infinite of 

* Cic. Acad. Qiuest. 4. Abbe de Canaye, Mem. de 
l.Vcad. d'Inscrip. torn. x. frd 

t Diog. Laert. cap. 6. Cic. Acad. Quaest. 4, &c. 
+ Arist. Metap. Diog. Laert. Cic. Qwest 4, &C 

408 ATHENS : 

book Anaxhnander, for he held the Air to I I in 


Itself, and infinite in its natun 

N - XV. While these wild but ingenious ipeen* 

lators conducted the career of thai philosophy 

called the Ionian, to the later time of the scn-m- 

and lofty Bpiritaalism of Anaxagoras, two new 

stdiools arose, both founded by tonians, but dia* 
ttnguished by leparate name- — the Eleatic 
the Italic. The fir>t iras founded by Xenophs 
of Colophon, in Elea, a town in western Italv. 

Migrating to an alien shore, colonisation » 
to have produced in philosophy the same results 
which it produced in politics : it emancipated the 
reason from all previous prejudice- and prescrip- 
tive shackles. Xenophanes was the first thinker 
B.C. 538. who openly assailed the popular faith. He di- 
vested the Great Deity of the human attributes 
which human vanity, assimilating God to man, 
had bestowed upon him. The Divinity of 
Xenophanes is that of modern philosophy- 
Eternal, Unalterable, and Alone : graven 
images cannot represent his form. His attri- 
butes are— all hearing, all sight, and all 


To the Eleatic School, founded by Xeno- 
phanes, belong Parmenides, Melissus the Sa- 
mian, Zeno, and Heraclitus of Ephesus. All 
these were thinkers, remarkable for courage and 


subtlety. The main metaphysical doctrines of hook 
this school approach, in many respects, to those 
that have been familiar to modem speculators. *. 
Their predecessors argued, as the basis of their 
system, from experience of the outward world, 
and the evidence of the senses ; — the Bleatic 
School, on the contrary, commenced their s\ s» 
tem from the reality of ideas, and thence argued 
on the reality of external objects; experit i 
with them was but a show and an appearance ; 
knowledge was not in tilings without, but in the 
mind ; — they were the founders of Idealism. 
With respect to the Deity, they imagined the 
whole universe filled with it — God ffM \i i. in 
all. Such, though each philosopher varied the 
System in detail, were the main metaphysical 
dogmas of the Bleatie School. lt< masters w< 
high- wrought, subtle, and religious thinkers ; 
but their doctrines were based upon a theory 
that necessarily led to paradox and mysticism ; 
and finally conduced to the meat dangerous of 
all the ancient sects — that of the Sophi 

We may here observe, that the spirit of 
poetry long continued to breathe in the forms 
of philosophy. Even Anaximander, and his 
immediate followers in the Ionic School, while 
writing in prose, appear, from a few fragments 
left to us, to have had much recourse to poetical 

410 AIM 

book expression, and often eonvey a dogma by an 

iin;iLiC ; while, in tin- Khatie School, \ 

\. phones and Parmenides, adopted the form it-elf 
of vcix', a- the inciliuiii l'<»r communicating 
theii theories; and Zeno, perhaps bom the bow 
example of the Drama, first introduced into phi- 
losophical dispute that fashion of dial bicfa 

afterward- gaTS to the sternest and loftiesl 
thought, the animation and life of dramatic 

XVI. But even before the Eleatic School 
arose, the most remarkable and ambitious of all 
the earlier reasoners, the arch uniter of actual 
polities with enthusiastic rev< be hero of 

a thousand legends — a demi-god in his ends, 
and an impostor in his means — Pythagoras, of 
Samos, — conceived, and partially executed, the 
vast design of establishing a speculative wisdom, 
and an occult religion, as the key-stone of poli- 
tical institutions. 

So mysterious is everything relating to Pytha- 
goras, so mingled with the grossest fables and 
the wildest superstitions, that he seems scarcely 
to belong to the age of History, or to the ad- 
vanced and practical Ionia. The date of his birth 
— his very parentage, are matters of dispute and 
doubt. Accounts concur in considering his father 
not a native of Samos ; and it seems a probable 


supposition that he was of Lemnian or Pelasgic hook 
origin. Pythagoras travelled early info Egypt 

( 1 1 \ ] • 

and the East, and the system, most plausibly *. 
ascribed to him, hetrays something of oriental 
mystery and priestcraft in its peculiar doctrines, 
and much more of those alien elemental in 
pervading and general spirit. The notion of 
uniting a state with religion is especially Eastern, 
and essentially anti-Hellenic. Returning to 
Samos, be is said to have found the able Poly- 
crates in the tyranny of the government, and 
to have quitted his birth-place in disgust. If, 
then, he had already ooneaired his political de- 
signs, it is clear that they could never have 
been executed under a jealous and acute tyrant; 
for, in the first place, radical innovations are ne\ 
so effectually opposed as in governments concen- 
trated in the hands of a single man ; and, 
condly, the very pith and core of the system of 
Pythagoras consisted in the establishment of 
an oligarchic aristocracy — a constitution most 
hated and most persecuted by the Grecian 
tyrants. The philosopher migrated into Italy. 
He had already, in all probability, made him- 
self renowned in Greece. For it was then a 
distinction to have travelled into Egypt, the 
seat of mysterious and venerated learning ; and, 
philosophy, like other novelties, appears to have 

A 12 ATHENS : 

book passed into fashion even with the multitude. 

Not only all the traditions respecting this 

< ii \ p 

W. extraordinary man, l>ut tin- certain ta< t of the 

mio ht \ effect, that in his Bingle person i 

wards wrought in Italy, ptore him *lso to DttVfl 

possessed that nameless art of making ■ per* 
sonal impression npon mankind, and creating 
individual enthusiasm, which i- i 
those who obtain amoral command, and arc thi 
founders of sects and institutions. It ii bo much 
in conformity with the manners of the tinir, and 
the objects of Pythagoras, to believe that he dili- 
gently explored the ancient religions and poli- 
tical systems of Greece, from which he had 
long been a stranger, that we cannot reject the 
traditions (however disfigured with fable) that 
he visited Delos, and affected to receive instruc- 
tions from the pious ministrants of Delphi.* 

* It must ever remain a disputable matter how far the 
Ionian Pythagoras was influenced by affection for Dorian 
policy and customs, and how far he designed to create a 
state upon the old Dorian model. On the one hand, it is 
certain that he paid especial attention to the rites and insti- 
tutions most connected with the Dorian deity, Apollo— that, 
according to his followers, it was from that god that he 
derived his birth, a fiction that might be interpreted into 
a Dorian origin ; he selected Croton as his residence, 
because it was under the protection of " his household god/' 
his doctrines are said to have been delivered in the Dorian 


At Olympia, where he could not fail to be book 
received with curiosity and distinction, the future 
lawgiver is said to have assumed the title of v. 
Philosopher, the first who claimed the name. For 
the rest, we must yield our faith to all probable 
accounts, both of his own earnest preparati* 

dialect ; and much of his educational discipline, much of his 
political system, hear an evident affinity to the old Cretan and 
Spartan institutions. But, on the other hand, it is prohahle that 
Pythagoras favoured the god of Delphi, partly from the close 
connexion which many of His symbols bore to the metaphy- 
sical speculations the philosopher had learned to cultivate in 
the schools of oriental mysticism, and partly from the- fact 
that Apollo was the patron of the .Medical Art, in which 

Pythagoras was an eminent professor, And in studying the 
institutions of Crete and Sparta, he might rather have designed 

to strengthen, by example*] the system he had already adopted, 

than have taken from thoM Dorian cities the primitive and 
guiding notions of the constitution he afterwards established: 
And in this Pythagoras might have resembled most re- 
formers, not only of his own, but of all ages, who desire to 
go back to the earliest principles of the past, as the sources 
of experience to the future. In the Dorian institutions was 
preserved the original character of the Hellenic nation ; and 
Pythagoras, perhaps, valued or consulted them, less because 
they were Dorian, than because they were ancient. It 
seems, however, pretty clear that in the character of his 
laws, he sought to conform to the spirit and mode of legis- 
lation already familiar in Italy, since Charondas and Zaleucus, 
who flourished before him, are ranked by Diodorus and 
others among his disciples. 

414 ATIII 

hook for \\\< design, and of the high Depute 

quired in Greece, that may tend to lessen tin* 

CHAP, . , . , , 

v. miracle ot tin - that awaited Imn iii the 

cities of the • 

l'viimg. XVII. Pythagoraj arrived in Italy (faring 
mo— 5io. the reign of Tarqnininj Superbus, according 

the testimony of Cicero and Aulus Gellinf, 4 
and fixed his residence in Croton, a city in tin- 
Bay of Tarentum, colonised by Greeki ot the 
Achaean tribe. f If we may lend a partial credit 
to the extravagant fables of later disciples, en- 
deavouring to extract from florid superadd i- 
tion some original germ of simple truth, if 
would seem, that he first appeared in the cha- 
racter of a teacher of youth ; J and, as wai not 
unusual in those times, soon rose from the pre- 
ceptor to the legislator. Dissensions in the city 
favoured his objects. The senate, (consisting of 
a thousand members, doubtless of a different 
race from the body of the people ; the first the 
posterity of the settlers, the last the native popu- 
lation,) availed itself of the arrival and influence 
of an eloquent and renowned philosopher. He 
lent himself to the consolidation of aristocracies, 
and was equally inimical to democracy and 

* Livy dates it in the reign of Servius Tullus. 

f Strabo. 

± Iamblichus, c. viii. ix. See also Plato de Repub., lib. x. 


tyranny. But his policy was that of no vulgar noon 
ambition ; he refused, at least for a time, i 


tensible power and office, and was contented \. 
with instituting an organised and formidable 
society — not wholly dissimilar to that mighty 
order, founded by Loyola, in times compara- 
tively recent. The disciples admitted into thi- 
society underwent examination and probation ; 
it was through degree! that thev pa— ed into it- 
higher honours, and were admitted into its 
deeper secrets. Religion made the basis of the 
fraternity — but religion connected with human 
ends of advancement and power. He selected 
the three hundred, who, at Croton, formed hi- 
order, from the noblest families, and thev VI 
professedly reared to know them»el\ «•>, that so 
they might be fitted to command the world. It was 
not Long before this society , of which Pythagoses 
iras the head, appears toners supplanted the 

ancient senate, and obtained the legislative ad- 
ministration. In this institution, Pythago 
stands alone — no other founder of Greek philo- 
sophy resembles him. By all accounts, he also 
differed from the other sages of his time, in his 
estimate of the importance of women. He is 
said to have lectured to, and taught, them. His 
wife was herself a philosopher, and fifteen dis- 
ciples of the softer sex rank among the pro- 

4 K> ATHENS : 

book miiicnt ornaments of ln's school. An ordef 

I V. 

based upon so profound a knowledge of all that 
CHAP. '. 

v. can fascinate or cheat mankind, could nol 

to secure a temporary power. Hi- influence was 

unbounded in ( 'roton — it extended to other 
Italian cities — it amended, or overturned poli- 
tical constitution-; and had Pythagoras pos- 
sessed a more coarse and personal ambition, he 
might, perhaps, have founded a mighty dyna 
and enriched our social annals with the results 
of a new experiment. But his was the ambi- 
tion, not of a hero, but a sage. He wis 
rather to establish a system than to exalt him- 
self; his immediate followers saw DOt all the 
consequences that might be derived from the 
fraternity he founded : and the political de- 
signs of his gorgeous and august philosophy, 
only for a while successful, left behind them 
but the mummeries of an impotent freemason rv, 
and the enthusiastic ceremonies of half-witted 

XVIII. It was when this power, so mystic and 
so revolutionary, had, by the means of branch 
societies, established itself throughout a con- 
siderable portion of Italy, that a general feeling 
of alarm and suspicion broke out against the 
sage and his sectarians. The anti-Pythagorean 
risings, according to Porphyry, were sufficiently 

(II u\ 

\ . 


numerous and active to be remembered for long hook 

generations afterwards. Many of the -apse's 
friends arc said to have perished, and it if doubt- 
ful whether Pythagoras himself fell a vietim to 
the rage of lii^ enemies, or died, a fugiti 
amongst his disciples at Metapontum. N 
it until nearly the whole of Lower Italy was torn 
by convulsions, and Greece herself drawn into 
tin- contest, as pacificator and arbiter, that the 

ferment was allayed : — the Pythagorean institu- 
tions were abolished, and the timocratic demo- 
eraeies* of the Aeha'ans POSC upon the NUBS 

of those intellectual but ungenial oligarchi 

\I\. Pythagoras committed a fatal error 
when, in his attempt to revolutionise . he 

had recourse to arUtOCracleS for hi- agents. l\r- 
volutions, especially those influenced by religion, 
can never he worked out but by popular emotion-. 

It was from this error of judgment that h«- en- 
listed the people against him — for, by the ac- 
count of Neanthes, related by Porphyry, t and 

* That the Achaean governments were democracies appears 
sufficiently evident ; nor is this at variance with the remark of 
Xenophon, that timocracies were " according to the law9 
of the Achaeans ;" since timocracies were but modified demo- 

f The Pythagoreans assembled at the house of Milo, the 
wrestler, who was an eminent general and the most illustri- 
VOL. II. E F. 

4 is \ i ni;\s : 

hook indeed from all other testimony, it ii clearly 
evident thai to popular, not party, commo- 
v tion his fall must he ascribed. It il no 1. - 
clear that alter his death, while his phil 
phical sect remained, hi- political <•>><{(■ crumbled 
away. The only seeds sown by philosopt] 
which spring np into Greal States, are those 

that, whether for good or evil, are planted in 
the hearts of the Many. 

XX. The purely intellectual additions made 
1>\ Pythagoras to human wisdom seem to h 
been vast and permanent. By probabl 
mony, he added largely to mathematical Bcien 
and his discoveries in arithmetic, astronomy, 
music, and geometry, constitute an era in the His- 
tory of the Mind. His metaphysical and moral 
speculations are not to be separated from the ad- 
ditions or corruptions of his disciples. But we 
must, at least, suppose, that Pythagoras et 
blished the main proposition, of the occult pro- 
perties of numbers, which were held to be the 
principles of all things. According to this 
theory, unity is the abstract principle of all per- 
fection, and the ten elementary numbers contain 

ous of the disciples, were stoned to death, the house being 
fired. Lapidation was essentially the capital punishment of 
mobs— the mode of inflicting death that invariably stamps the 
offender as an enemy to the populace. 



the elements of the perfect system of nature. BOOK 
By numbers the origin and the substance of all „ „ 

* b CHAP. 

things could be explained.* Numbers make the v - 
mystery of earth and heaven — of the gods them- 
selves. And this part of his system, which long 
continued to fool mankind, was a sort of mon- 
strous junction between arithmetic and magic — 
the most certain of sciences with the most (ant) 
tic of chimeras. The Pythagoreans supposed the 
sun, or central fire, to be the seat of Jupiter and 
the principle of life. The stars were divine. 
Men, and even animals, were held to have within 
them a portion of the celestial nature. The 
soul, emanating from the celestial fire,f can 
combine with any form of matter, and is com- 
pelled to pass through various bodies. Adopting 
the Egyptian doctrine of transmigration, the 
Pythagoreans coupled it with the notion of fu- 
ture punishment or reward. 

Much of the doctrinal morality of Pythagoras 
h admirable ; but it is vitiated by the ceremo- 
nial quackery connected with it. Humanity to 
all things — gentleness — friendship — love — and, 
shore all the rest, self-command — form the 
principal recommendations of his mild and patri- 
archal ethics. But, perhaps, from his desire to 

* Atist. Metaph. i. 3. f Diog. Laert. vii . 

I E 2 

420 ATi 1 1 

book establish ;• political fraternity — perhaps from ln^ 
doubt of the capacity of mankind to embrace 


f» Truth anadorned, enamoured only of berosn 
beeuty~-~these doctrinet were united with an 

austen- ind frivolous aseetism. And virtue was 
but to be attained by graduating through tin- 
secret and rigid ceremonies of academical im- 
postnre. Ui> disciples soon poshed the dogmas 

of their master into an extravagance at once dan- 
gerous and grotesque ; and what t! de- 
signed but for symbol- of a truth were cultii 
to the prejudice of the truth itself. The influ- 
ence of Pythagoras became corrupt and perni- 
cious in proportion as the original tenetfl became 
more and more adulterated or obscure, and 
served, in succeeding ages, to invest with the 
sanctity of a great name the most visionary chi- 
meras and the most mischievous wanderings of 
perverted speculation. But, looking to the man 
himself— his discoveries — his designs — his genius 
— his marvellous accomplishments, — we cannot 
but consider him as one of the most astonishing 
persons the world ever produced ; and, if in part 
a mountebank and an impostor, no one, perhaps, 
ever deluded others with motives more pure — 
from an ambition more disinterested and bene- 

XXI. Upon the Athenians the effect of these 



various philosophers was already marked and in- BOOK 
fluential. From the time of Solon there had ^ 

existed in Athens a kind of school of politics] 
philosophy.* But it was not a school of re- 
fining dogmas or systematic ethics ; it was too 
much connected with daily and practical life, to 
foster to any great extent the abstract contempla- 
tions and recondite theories of metaphysical 
discoverers. Mnesiphilus, the most eminent of 
these immediate successors of Solon, was tin- 
instructor of Themistocles, the very antipodes 
of rhetoricians and refiners. But now a m m 
age of philosophy was at hand. Already the 
Eleatic sages, Zeno and Parmenides, had 
travelled to Athens, and there proclaimed 

their doctrines, and Zeno numbered amongst 
his listeners and disciple- the youthful Pe- 
ricles. But a far more sensible influence sras 
exercised by Anaxagoras of the Ionian school. 
For thirty years, viz. from b.c. 480 to B.C. 
460, during that eventful and stirring pe- 
riod intervening between the battle of Ther- 
mopylae and the commencement of the five 
years' truce with Sparta, followed by the death 
of Cimon, (b.c. 449,) this eminent and most 

* Plut. in vit. Them. The Sophists were not, therefore, 
as is commonly asserted, the first who brought philosophy t<> 
bear upon polities. 

423 ATi 1 1 ■ 

book accomplished reasoner resided in Athens." Hi- 

i \ 

doctrines were t h« •-<• mosl cherished l>v Pericles, 


v. who ranked the philosopher amongsi his intimate 
friends. Alter an absence of i . be 

again returned to Athens ; and are shall then 
find him subjected to a prosecution in whicfa 
ligtous prejudice was stimulated l»\ party fend. 
More addicted to physics than to metaphye 
research, lie alarmed tin; national superstition In 
explaining on physical principles the formation 
even of tin; celestial bodies. According to him, 
the Mm itself — that centre of divine perfection 
with the Pythagoreans— was ejected from tin; 
earth and heated into fire by rapid motion. II- 
maintained that the proper study of man was the 
contemplation of nature and the heavens :f and 
he refined the Author of the universe into an in- 
tellectual principle, (Nouc,) which went to the 
root of the material causes mostly favoured by 
his predecessors and contemporaries. He ad- 
mitted the existence of matter, but intelligence 
was the animating and pervading principle, 
creating symmetry from chaos, imposing limit 
and law on all things, and inspiring life, and 
sensation, and perception. His predecessors in 

* See, for evidence of the great gifts and real philosophy 
of Anaxagoras, Brucker de Sect. Ion. xix. 
f Arist. Eth. Eu. i. 5. 



the Ionian school, who left the universe lull of hook 

i\ . 
gods, had not openly attacked the popular 

mythology. But the assertion of Oll€ lntelli- \- 
gence, and the reduction of all else to material 
and physical causes, could not but have breath 
a spirit wholly inimical to the numerous ami 
active deities of Hellenic worship. Party feel- 
ing against his friend and patron IVricl 
ultimately drew the general suspicion into a 
focus ; and Anaxagoras vTU compelled to quit 
Athens, and passed the remainder of his day- 
Lampsaciis. But his influence survived his 
xile. His pupil, Archelaus, was the first nat 
Athenian who taught philosophy at Athens, and 
from him we date the foundation of those brilliant 
and imperishable Schools which secured to 
Athens an intellectual empire long after her 
political independence had died away. Arche- 
laus himself, (as was the usual custom of the 
earlier sages,) departed widely from the ten 
of his master. He supposed that two discordant 
principles, fire ami water, had, by their opera- 
lion, drawn all things from chaos into order, 
and his metaphysics were those of unalloyed 
materialism. At this period, too, or a little 

* Archelaus began to teach during the interval between 
the first ami second visit of Anaxagoras. 8ee l'ast. Hell. 
vol. ii. B.C. 450. 

-J -J I 1THSX 

■oos later, began ilowlji to arise in .Athens the 

i of the SophifU. niiicci niiiL: whom so much 
\. has been written, and 10 little i- known, nut 
as the effects of their Lessoni were oof II 

time widely apparent, it will b in the 

order of ihlf hi-torv to deter to a Later en II 
examination of the doetiim> of that perverted 
hut not wholly pernicious BehooL 

XXII. Enough ha- been now said to con vej 

to the reader a general notion of the prodigi 
riee which, in the mo-t lerene of intellectual 
departments, had been made in Greece, from 

the appearance of Solon to tin? lectin.- of Ar- 
chelaus, who was the master of Socrates. With 

the Athenians philosophy was not a thing apart 
from the occupations of life and the events of 
history — it was not the monopoly of a few stu- 
dious minds, but was cultivated as a fashion by 
the young- and the well-born, the statesman, 
the poet, the man of pleasure, the votary of 
ambition.* It was inseparably interwoven with 
their manners, their pursuits, their glory, their 
decay. The history of Athens includes in itself, 
the history of the human mind. Science and 
art — erudition and genius — all conspired. — no 
less than the trophies of Miltiades, the ambition 
of Alcibiades — the jealousy of Sparta — to the 
* See the evidence of this in the Clouds of Aristophanes. 



causes of the Rise and Fall of Athens. And e\ n 
that satire on themselves, to which, in the im- 
mortal lampoons of Aristophanes, the Athenian 
populace listened, exhibits a people whom, what- 
ever their errors, the world never can see again 
— with whom philosophy was a pastime — with 
whom the Agora itself was an Academe — wh 
coarsest exhibitions of buffoonery and caricature 
sparkle with a wit, or expand into a poetry, 
which attest the cultivation of the audience no 
less than the genius of the author ; — a people, in 
a word, whom the Stagirite unconsciously indi- 
vidualised when he laid down a general propo- 
sition, which nowhere else can be reeefoed as 

a truism, — that the common people are the 
most exquisite jttdgei of whatever in art is 
graceful, harmonious, or sublin 



\ . 










01 Nil CI DID] - 

I. On tlie death of Cimon the aristocratic party book 
in Athens felt that the position of their anta- 

• • CHAP. 

gomsts and the temper of the times required ■ 1. 
leader of abilities widely distinct from those b.c. 4«f. 
which had characterised the son of Miltiades, 

Instead of a skilful and enterprising general, 
often absent from the eitv on dazzling- but dis- 
tant expeditions, it was necessary to raise up a 
chief who could contend for their enfeebled and 
disputed privileges at home, and meet the for- 
midable Pericles, with no unequal advantages 
of civil experience and oratorical talent, in the 




4.*{<) \lll|\ 

BOOI lists of tlic popular assembly, Of in the strata- 
gems of political intrigue. Accordingly their 
choice t«'ll neither od Myronides nor Tolmid 
hut on our who, (bongo not highly celebrated fol 
military exploits, was deemed superior to ( lira 
whether a> a practical statesman, or a popular 
orator. Thncydides, their new champion] 
united with his natural gifts whatever adi 
tage might result from the memory of Cimon ; 
and hi- connexion with that distinguished war- 
rior, to whom ho was brother-in-1 
to keep together the various partisans of the fac- 
tion, and retain to tin: eupatrid- something of the 
respect and enthusiasm which the services of Ci- 
mon could not fail to command, even amongst the 
democracy. The policy embraced by Thucydid< - 
was perhaps the best which the state of affairs 
would permit ; but it was one which was fraught 
with much danger. Hitherto the eupatrids and 
the people, though ever in dispute, had not been 
absolutely and totally divided ; the struggles of 
either faction being headed by nobles, scarcely 
permitted to the democracy the perilous advan- 
tage of the cry — that the people were on one 
side, and the nobles on the other. But Thu- 
cydides, seeking to render his party as strong 
compact, and as united as possible, brought the 
main bulk of the eupatrids to act together in 


one body. The means by which he pursued and 
attained this object are not very clearly narrated ; 

J . CHAP. 

but it was probably by the formation of a politi- L 
cal club — a species of social combination which 
afterwards became very common to all classes in 
Athens. The first effect of this policy favour. ■< I 
the aristocracy, and the energy and union they 
displayed restored for awhile the equilibrium of 
parties ; but the aristocratic influence, thus 
made clear and open, and brought into avowed 
hostility with the popular cause, the city WW 
rent in two, and the community were plainly 
invited to regard the nobles as their foes.* 1\ - 
ricles thus, more and more thrown upon the de- 
mocracy, became identified with their interests, 
and he sought, no less by taste than policy, to 
prove to the populace that they had grown up 
into a wealthy and splendid nation, that could 
dispense with the bounty, the shows, and the 
exhibitions of individual nobles, lie lavished 
the superfluous treasures of the state upon public 
festivals, statelv processions, and theatrical page- 
ants. As if desirous of elevating the commons 
to be themselves a nobility, all by which he ap- 
pealed to their favour served to refine their taste 
and to inspire the meanest Athenian with a 
sense of the Athenian grandeur. It was said 

* Plut. in vit. Per. 







by his enemies, tnd tin- old talc ha- \>c<-u < 
dulously repeated, that hi- own private fort' 
not allowing him to vie with the wealthy 
whom be opposed, it was to supply his defi- 
ciencies from the public stock that he directed 
some part of tin- national wealth to the encou- 
ragement of the national arts, and tin- display 
of the national magnificence. But it i- n 
than probable that it was rather from principle 
than personal ambition that Pericles desired to 
discountenance and eclipse the interested bribes 
to public favour with which Cimon and others 
had sought to corrupt the populace. Not was 
Perieles without the means or the spirit to de- 
vote his private fortune to proper objects of 
nerosity. " It was his wealth and his pru- 
dence," says Plutarch, when, blaming the im- 
providence of Anaxagoras, "that enabled him 
to relieve the distressed." "What he spent in 
charity he might perhaps have spent more pro- 
fitably in display, had he not conceived that 
charity was the province of the citizen, magni- 
ficence the privilege of the state. It was in 
perfect consonance with the philosophy that now 
began to spread throughout Greece, and with 
which the mind of this great political artist was 
so deeply embued, to consider that the Graces 
ennobled the city they adorned, and that the 


glory of a state was intimately connected with iOOK 
the polish of the people. „,,,,. 

II. While, at home, the divisions of the state !■ 
were progressing to that point in which the 
struggle between the opposing leaden must 
finally terminate in the ordeal of the ostracism — 
abroad, new causes of hostility broke out 
tween the Athenians and the Spartans. The 
sacred city of Delphi formed a part of the 
Phocian nation ; but, from a remote period, its 
citizens appear to have exercised the indepen- 
dent right of managing the affairs of the 
temple,* and to have elected their own sup 
intendents of the oracle and the treasure-. In 
Delphi yet lingered the trace of the Dorian in 
tutious, and the Dorian Mood, hut the primi; 
valour and hardy virtues of the ancestral tribe 
had long since mouldered away. The promis- 
cuous intercourse of strangers, the contami- 
nating influence of unrelaxing imposture and 
priestcraft— above all, the wealth of the city, 

* See Thucyd. lib. v. c. 18, in which the articles of peace 
State that tlit.- temple and fane of Delphi should be indepen- 
dent, and that the citizens should settle their own taxes, re- 
ceive their own re\enues, and manage their own affairs as a 
sovereign nation, (uuroreXets raj aircc/towcj') according to 
the ancunt laws of their country. 

1 Consult on these words Arnolds Thucydides, vol. ii. p. 
•2.")G, note 4. 

VOL. II. t f 


434 vihi.n 

book from which the native- dren subsistence, and 

<\(ii luxury, without labour,* contributed 
• • enfeeble and corrupt the national chara< 
Unable to defend themselves by their 
tions against any enemy , the Delphians relied on 
the passive protection afforded by the supei 
tious reverence of their neighbo on the 

firm alliance that existed between themselves 
and the great. Spartan representatives of tl 
common Dorian race. The Athenian govern- 
ment could not but deem it desirable to in 
from the Delphians the charge over the ora 
and the temple, since that charge might at any 
time be rendered subservient to the Spartan 
cause ; and accordingly they appear to have con- 
nived at a bold attempt of the Phocians, who 
were now their allies. These hardier neigh- 
bours of the Sacred City claimed and forcibly 
seized the right of superintendence of the tem- 
ple. The Spartans, alarmed and aroused, des- 
patched an armed force to Delphi, and restored 
their former privileges to the citizens. They 
piously gave to their excursion the name of the 
Sacred War. Delphi formally renounced the 
Phocian league, declared itself an independent 
state, and even defined the boundaries between 
its own and the Phocian domains. Sparta \fas 
rewarded for its aid by the privilege of prece- 
* Muller's Dorians, vol. ii. p. 422. Athen. iv. 


dency in consulting the oracle, and this decree hook 
Ihe Spartans inscribed on a brazen wolf in the 
SftCred city. The Athenians no longer now L 
acted through others — they recognised all the 

advantage of securing to their friends and wr. 

tng from their foes the management <>f an 
oracle, en whose voice depended fortune in war, 

and prosperity In peace. Scarce had the Spartan^ 
withdrawn, than an Athenian force, headed h\ 
Pericles, who is said to have been freed by 

Anaxagoras from superstitions prejudices, entered 

the city, and restored the temple to the Pho- 
cians. The Bame image which had recorded 
the privilege Of the Spartans, now DOTfl an in- 
SCription which awarded the right of precedent 
to the Athenians. — The good fortune of this 

expedition was ><>on reversed. 

III. When the Athenians, after the hattle of 
(Enophyta, had established in the Boeotian citi«- 

democratic forms of government, the principal 

members of the defeated oligarchy, either from 
choice or by compulsion, betook themselves to 
exile. These malcontents, aided, no doubt, by 
partisans who did not share their banishment, 
now seized upon Clneronea, Orchomenus, and 
some other Boeotian towns. The Athenians, 
who had valued themselves on restoring liberty to 
Bojotia, and, for the first time since the Persian 

f f2 

136 athi:\ 

book war.had honoured with burial at the public I 
nm , those who fell under Myronid--. could no? 
lm gard this attempt at counter-revolution with in- 
difference. Policy aided their love of Liberty I 
for it must never DC forgotten, that the change 
from democratic to oligarchic government in the 
Grecian states, was the formal excha I the 

Athenian for the Spartan alliance. Vet 1'. ri- 
des, who ever unwillingly retorted to war. ami 
the most remarkable attribute of who-, elm 
ter was a profound and calculating eaution, op- 
posed the proposition of sending an armed t 
into Bceotia. His objections were twofold — lie 
considered the time unseasonable, and he was 
averse to hazard upon an issue not immediately 
important to Athens, the flower of her Hoplites, 
or heavy-armed soldiery, of whom a thousand 
had offered their services in the enterpr 
Nevertheless, the counsel of Tolmides, who 
eager for the war, and flushed with past suc- 
cesses, prevailed. " If," said Pericles, " you 
regard not my experience, wait, at least, for the 
advice of Time, that best of councillors." . The 
saying was forgotten in the popular enthusiasm 
it opposed — it afterwards attained the veneration 

of a prophecy. 


* A short change of administration, perhaps, accom- 
panied the defeat of Pericles, in the debate on the Boeo- 


IV. Aided by some allied troops, and especially book 
by his thousand volunteers, Tolmides swept into 

r» • ^ • CHAP. 

Boeotia — reduced Chaeronea — garrisoned the eaj>- i. 
tured town, and was returning homeward, when, 
in the territory of Coronea, he suddenly fell in with 
a hostile ambush,* composed of the exiled baml- 
OrchomenuSjOf Opuntian Locrians,and the parti- 
lans'of the oligarchies of Eubcea. Battle ensned, 
— the Athenians reeeived a signal and memorable 
defeat; many were made prisoners, many slaugh- 
tered : the pride and youth of the Athenian 
Jloplites were left on the field ; the brave and 
wealthy Clinias, (father to the yet more re- 
nowned Alcibiades,) and Tolmides himself 
wore slain. But the disaster of defeat \sa- 

nothing in comparison with its consequence i. To 

recover their prisoners, the Athenian government 
were compelled to enter into ■ treaty with the 

lu>>rile oligarchies, and withdraw their fan 
from Boeotia. On their departure, the old oli- 
garchies everywhere replaced the friendly de- 
mocracies, and the nearest neighbours of Athens 
were again her foes. Nor was this change con- 

tian expedition. He was evidently in power, since he had 
managed the public funds, during the opposition of Thucy- 
dides, but when beaten, as we should sa\ . "on the Boeotian 
question," the victorious party probably came into office. 
* An ambush, according to Diodorus, lib. xii. 

438 uiiKfts: 

book fined to Baeotia. In Locrif and Phocii the 


popular party ''1' u 'th the fortunes of Coronea 

i. — the exiled oligarchial were re-established 
and when we next read of these states, thej 
the .allies of Sparta. At home, the resulti 
the day of Corohei wnv yd more important. 
By the slaughter of so many of the Hoplil 
the aristocratic party in Athens w< atly 

weakened, while the Degleoted remonstrances 
and Tear- of Pericles, now remembered, secured 
to him a respect and confidence which 10011 
served to turn the balance against his competitor, 

V. The first defeat of the proud mistress of the 
Grecian sea was a signal for the revolt of dis- 
affected dependents. The Isle of Euboea, the 
pasturages of which were now necessary to the 
Athenians, encouraged by the success that at 
Coronea had attended the arms of the Eubcean 
B.C. 445. exiles, shook off the Athenian yoke. In tin- 
same year expired the five years' truce with 
Sparta, and that state forthwith prepared to 
avenge its humiliation at Delphi. Pericles 
seems once more to have been called into official 
power — he was not now supine in action. At 
the head of a sufficient force he crossed the 
channel, and landed in Eubcea. Scarce had he 
gained the island, when he heard that Megara 


had revolted — that the Megarians, joined by par- hook 
tisane from Sicyon, Epidaurus, and Corinth, had 
put to the sword the Athenian garrison, save ■ 1 
few who had ensconced themselves in NistBA, and 
that an army of the Peloponnesian confederal 
was preparing to march to Attica. On receiving 
these tidings, Pericles re-embarked his fore 

and returned home. Soon appeared the Pelopon- 
nesian forces, commanded by the young 1*1. 
toanax, king of Sparta, who, being yet a minor, 

was placed under the guardianship of Clean- 
dridas; the lands by the western frontier of Attica, 
some of the most fertile of that territory, were de- 
\ astated, and the enemy penetrated to Eleusis and 
Tlnia. But not a blow was struck — they com- 
mit ted the aggression and departed. On their 
return to Sparta, Pleistoanax and Cleandridas 
were aCCUSed of having been bribed to betray 
the honour, or abandon the revenge, "i" Sparta. 
Cleandridas fled the prosecution, and was con- 
demned to death in his exile. Pleistoanax also 
(putted the country, and took refuge in Ar- 
cadia, in the sanctuary of Mount Lycaeum. 
The suspicions of the Spartans appear to have 
been too well founded, and Pericles, on passing 
his accounts that year, is stated to have put 
down ten talents* as devoted to a certain use — 

* Twenty talents, according to the scholiast of Aristo- 
phanes. Suidas states the amount variously at fifteen and fifty. 

440 Aiiii.N 

BOOK an item which the assembly I t<> in 

v. , .. 

( hap con ^ c,(),ls an0 * ieg*C10US >i 1*ii- This I 

'• rhidable enemy retired, Periclea once more 

B.C. M5. entered Eubcta, and reduced the iale. In 
Chalcis, he is laid by Plutarch to li 
polled the opulent landowners, who, no doubt, 
formed tin* oligarchic chiefs of the revolt, and 
colonized Hi-tiaa with Athenians, driving out 
at least the greater part of the native popula- 
tion. • For the latter severity v tone of 
the strongest apologies thai tin- stern ju 
war can plead tor its harshest sentences- the 
Histioeans bad captured an .Athenian reasel and 
murdered the crew. The rest of* the island 
was admitted to conditions by which the amount 
of tribute was somewhat oppressively increased. t 
VI. The inglorious result of the Peloponne- 
sian expedition into Attica naturally tended to 
make the Spartans desirous of peace upon 
honourable terms, while the remembrance of 
dangers, eluded rather than crushed, could not 
fail to dispose the Athenian government to con- 
ciliate a foe from whom much was to be appre- 

b.c. 445. hended and little gained. Negotiations were 
commenced and completed. The Athenians 

* Who fled into Macedonia. — Theopomp. ap. Strab. 
The number of Athenian colonists was one thousand, accord- 
ing to Diodorus — two thousand, according to Theopompus. 

t Aristoph. Nub. 213. 


surrendered some of the most valuable fruits of book 

their victories, in their hold on the Pelonon- 

r CHAP. 

ncsus. They gave up their claim on Nisa?a and I« 
Pegae — they renounced the footing they had 
tablished in Troezene — they abandoned alliai 
or interference with Achaia, over which kh< 
influence had extended to a degree that might 
reasonably alarm the Sjtartans, since they had 
obtained the power to raise troops in that pro- 
vince, and Achssan auxiliaries had >crved under 
Pericles at the siegreof (Eniada;.* Such were tin- 
conditions upon which a truce of thirty years v. 
based. | The articles were ostensibly unfavourable 
to Athens. Boeotia was gone — Locris, Phocis, an 
internal revolution, (the result of ( oronea,) had 
torn from their alliance. The citizens of Delphi 
must have regained the command of their oracle, 
since henceforth its sacred VOlte \\;i- in favour 
of the Spartans. Megan was lost — and now all 
the holds on the Peloponnesus Were surrendered. 
These reverses, rapid ami signal, might have 
taught the Athenians how pivearious is ever 
the military eminence of small states. But the 
treaty with Sparta, if disadvantageous iras not 
dishonourable. It was founded upon one broad 
principle, without which, indeed, all peace 
would have been a mockery — viz. that the 
Athenians should not interfere with the affairs 

" Thucyd. i. 111. t Tlmcyd. i. 115. 

1 L9 II m.\s : 

boos of the Peloponnesus. Thii principle icko< 

lodged, tin- surrender of advantages or con- 
I- quests tli at were incompatible With it, w;is hut 
a necessary detail. A| Periclei vraf at this 
time in office,* and ts he had struggled against 
an armed interference with the Boeotian town-. 
so it is probable that be, followed out his own 
policy in surrendering ;ill right to interfere 
with the Peloponnesian states. Only by p 
with Sparta could he accomplish 1 de- 

signs for the greatness of Athens— d< bich 

rafted not upon her land forces, hut upon her 
confirming and consolidating her empire of the 
sea ; and are shall shortly find, in our con-id 
tion of her revenues, additional reasons for Re- 
proving a peace essential to her stability* 

VII. Scarce was the truce effected, ere the 
struggle between Thucydides and Pericles ap- 
proached its crisis. The friends of the former 
never omitted an occasion to charge Pericles 
with having too lavishly squandered the public 
funds upon the new buildings which adorned 
the city. This charge of extravagance, ever 
an accusation sure to be attentively • received 
by a popular assembly, made a sensible im- 
pression. " If you think," said Pericles, to 

* As is evident, among other proofs, from the story before 
narrated of his passing his accounts to the Athenians with the 
item of ten talents employed as secret service money. 


tlie great tribunal before which he urged bifl BOOK 

defence, " that I have expended too much, * 
charge the sums to my account, not yours — but L 
on this condition, let the edifices be inscribed 
with my name, not that of the Athenian people.' 
This mode of defence, though perhaps but an 
oratorical hyperbole,* conveyed a rebuke which 
the Athenians were an audience calculated to 
answer but in one way -they dismissed the ac- 
cusation, and applauded the extravagance. 

VIII. Accusations against public men, when 
unsuccessful, are the fairest stepping-stones in 
their career. Thucydides failed ■gainst Pericles. 
The death of Tolmides— the defeat of Comma 
— the slaughter of the Iloplites— weakened the 

aristocratic party ; the democracy and the de- 
mocratic administration seized tin n for a 

* The Propyls* alone (nut then built) OQSt two thousand 
and twelve talents, (llarpncrat. in nfjinrvXitia ravra,) and 
some templei cost a thousand talents etch. [ vit. Per.] 

If the speech of Periclei referred to tuchworki as these, the 

otter to transfer the account to his own charge was indeed but 
a figure of eloquence. Hut, possibly, the accusation to which 
this offer was intended as a reply, was applicable only to 
M>me individual edifice, or some of the minor works, the cost 
of which his fortune might have defrayed. We can scarcely 
indeed suppose, that if the eje c ted generosity were but a 
bombastic flourish, it could have excited any feeling but 
laughter among an audience so acute. 


\ mi 

m ' v <)K decisive effort. Thueydides irti summoned to 
chap, fcne ostracism, and bis banishment freed Pe 
_i_ cles from his only rival for the supreme admi- 
nistration of the Athenian Empire. 







I. In the Age of Pericles there is that which book 
seems to excite, in order to disappoint, curiosity. 
We are fully impressed with the brilliant variety n - 
of his gifts — with the influence he exercised over B.C. 444. 
his times. He stands in the midst of great and 
immortal names, at the close of a heroic, and 
yet in the sudden meridian of a civilised, age. 
And scarcely does he recede from our gaze, ere 
all the evils which only his genius could keep 
aloof, gather and close around the city which it 
was the object of his life, not less to adorn as for 
festival than to crown as for command. It is 
almost as if, with Pericles, her very youth de- 
parted from Athens. Yet, so scanty are our 
details and historical materials, that the life of 


\ T H 

sop* ihis lurprising man is rather illustrated l>\ the 

CIIAl' J4 vllrl;i ' ''- nl "'' , '"' , '" |r - tM: '" I'V ,l "' UtS 

]1 - his own genius. Hi- military achievement! 
not dazzling. No relics, save a fern bold 
pressions, remain of the eloquence which ;i 
or soothed, excited of restrained, the moat 
difficult audience in the world. It i- partly by 
analysing the works if hit contemporarii 
partly l»y Doting the rise of the whole people — 
and partly by bringing together, an<l moulding 
into a whole, the - 1 masses of hi> ambi- 

tious and thoughtful policy, that we alo 
gauge and measure the proportions of tin- 
master-spirit of tin; time J of Pen 
is the sole historian of Perich 

This statesman was now at that period of life 
when public men are usually most esteemed — 
when, still in the vigour of manhood, th 
acquired the dignity and experience of years, out- 
lived the earlier prejudices and jealousies they 
excited, and see themselves surrounded by a new 
generation, amongst whom rivals must be less 
common than disciples and admirers. Step by step, 
through a long and consistent career, he had 
cended to his present eminence, sWthat his rise did 
not startle from its suddenness ; while his birth, 
his services, and his genius, presented a combina- 
tion of claims to power that his enemies could 

ITS RUB AM) 1 Ml . J47 

not despise, and that justified the Enthusiasm of hook 
his friends. His public character was unsullied : 
of the general belief of his integrity there i^ the n. 
highest evidence ;* and even the fen -lam! 
afterwards raised against him — such as thai 
entering into one war to gratify the resentment 
of A.-pa-ia, and into another to divert attention 
from his financial account-, are Libels so unsup- 
ported by any credible authority, and bo absurd 
in themselves, that they are but a proof how 
few were the points on which calumny could 
assail him. 

II. The obvious mode to account for the 
moral power of a man in any particular time, i- 
to consider hi> own character, and to ascertain 

how far it is suited to Command the age in which 
he lived, and the people whom he ruled. No 
Athenian, perhaps, ever possessed so manv qua- 
lities as Pericles for obtaining wide and la-tine. 
influence over the various rlnniKW of his countn 

* Tlit' testimony of Thucydides (lib. ii. e. 5) alone suffices 
to destroy all the ridiculous imputations against the honesty 
of l\ rides, which arose from the malice of contemporaries, 
and are yet perpetuated only by such writers as cannot 
weigh authorities Thucydides does not only call him incor- 
rupt, but -cltarly or notoriously hone>t." 1 Plutarch and 
Isocrates serve to corroborate this testimony. 

Xpi)ftiiTU)v re Cia<jKU-ioq UIWpOTUTOC. 

11^ \ I'll 



hook men. Bv hi- attention to maritime affairs, he 

won tin- Bailor*, now tin- most difficult part 

ii. of the population to humour or control ; bis 
encouragement to commerce secured the 
chants, and conciliated the alien settlers; while 
the stupendous works of art. everywhere carried 
on, necessorilyobtained tin- favour of the mighty 
crowd of artificers and mechanics whom they 
served to employ. Nor was it only to the 
practical interests, but to all tin- more refined, 
yet scarce less powerful sympathies of his coun- 
trymen, that his character appealed for support. 
Philosophy, with all parties, all factions, w 
becoming an appetite and passion. Peri< 
was rather the friend than the patron of philo 
phers. The increasing refinement of the Athe- 
nians — the vast influx of wealth that poured into 
the treasury from the spoils of Persia and the 
tributes of dependent cities, awoke the desire of 
art ; and the graceful intellect of Pericles at 
once indulged and directed the desire, by ad- 
vancing every species of art to its perfection. 
The freedom of democracy — the cultivation of 
the drama, (which is the oratory of poetry,) — 
the rise of prose literature — created the neces- 
sity of popular eloquence — and with Peri< 
the Athenian eloquence was born. Thus his 
power was derived from a hundred sources : 
whether from the grosser interests — the mental 


sympathies — the vanity — ambition — reason —or book 
imagination of the people. And in examining 
the character of Pericles, and noting its harmony "• 
with bis age, the admiration we bestow on him- 
self must be shared by his countrymen. He 
obtained a greater influence than Pisistral 
but it rested solely on the free-will of tin* Athe- 
nians — it was unsupported by armed force — it 
was subject to tin* Laws — it ought any day be 
dissolved ; and influence of this description is 
only obtained, in free Btatea, by men who are in 
themselves the likeness and representative of the 
vast majority of the democrat they wield. Even 
the aristocratic party that had so long opposed 
him, appear, with thefallofThucydides, to h 

relaxed their hostilities. hi fact, they had i 

to resent in Pericles than in any previous leader 

of the democracy. He was not, like Theini-- 
tocles, a daring upstart, vicing with, and 
eclipsing, their pretention-. He was of their 
own order. His name was not rendered ode 
to them by party proscriptions, or the memory of 
actual surlerings. He himself had recalled 
their idol Cimon — and in the measures that 
had humbled the Areopagus, so discreetly had 
he played his part, or so fortunately subor- 
dinate had been his co-operation, that the 
wrath of the aristocrats had fallen only on 


450 ATM IN 

itooK Bphialtes. After the ostracism of Tlmcvdides, 

" he becanif," sai - Plutarch, " a Dew man — no 

CH.A P. 

ii. longer so subservient to the multitude— and the 
government attuned an aristocratical, or rather 

monarchical, form." But these ex\ - in 

Plutarch are not to be literally received. The 
laws remained equally democratic — the a*_ 
equally strong — Pericles was equally subjected 

to thf popular control ; but having D 

quired tin- confidence of the People, he 
enabled more easily to direct them, or. as Thu- 
cydides luminously observes, " Not hai 
obtained his authority unworthily, he was not 
compelled to flatter or to soothe the popular 
humours, but, when occasion required, he could 
even venture vehemently to contradict them."f 
The cause which the historian assigns to the 
effect, is one that deserves to be carefully noted 
by ambitious statesmen — because the authority of 
Pericles was worthily acquired, the People often 
suffered it to be even unpopularly exerci- 
On the other hand, this far-seeing and prudent 
statesman was, no doubt, sufficiently aware of 
the dangers to which the commonwealth was 
exposed, if the discontents of the great aristo- 
cratic faction were not in some degree conci- 
liated, to induce his wise and sober patriotism, 
* Plut. in vit. Per. f Thucyd. lib. ii. c 65. 


if not actually to seek the favour of his oppo- book 

nents, at least cautiously to shun all idle 

... -, chap. 

attempts to revenge past hostilities, or feed the If. 

sources of future irritation. He owed much 
the singular moderation and evenness of hi- 
temper; and his debt to Anaxagoras must h. 
been indeed great, if the [eatoni of thai preacher 
of those cardinal virtues of the intellect, Serenity 
and Order, had assisted to form the rarest of all 
unions — a genius the most fervid, with passions 
the best regulated. 

II. It was about this time too, in all probabi- 
lity, that Pericles was enabled to consummate the 
policy he had always adopted with rtHptl to the 
tributary allies. We have seen that the trea- 
sury had been removed from Delos to Athei 
— it was now resolved to make Athens also the 
seat and centre of the judicial authority. The 
subject allies were compelled, if not on minor, 
at least on all important cases, to resort to Athe- 
nian courts of law for justice.* And thus 
Athens became, as it were, the metropolis of the 
allies. A more profound and sagacious mode of 

* " The model of this regulation, by which Athens ob- 
tained the most extensive influence, and an almost absolute 
dominion over the allies, was possibly found in other Grecian 
states which had subject confederates, such as Thebes, Elis, 
and Argos. But on account of the remoteness of many 

( ,g2 



quickly establishing bar ampin it was impoe* 

sible for ingenuity to conceive; bat M it was 
n - based upon an oppression that must ha 

daily and intolerably felt, — that every amui o 
life must bate called into irritating action ; so, 
with the establishment of the empire was si- 
multaneously planted an inevitable canse of its 
decay. For, though power ly attained 

without injustice, the injustii >ntinued , is 

the never-failing principle of its corrupt 
And, in order to endure, Authority must b 
to divest itself of all the more odious attributes o 

III. As a practical statesman, one principa 
point of view in which we must regard Perich 
is in his capacity of a financier. By English his- 

countries, it is impossible that every trifle could have been 
brought before the court at Athens ; we must, therefore, 
suppose that each subject state had an inferior jurisdic- 
tion of its own, and that the supreme jurisdiction alone be- 
longed to Athens. Can it, indeed, be supposed that person* 
would have travelled from Rhodes or Byzantium, for the sake 
of a law-suit of fifty or a hundred drachmas ? In private 
suits a sum of money was probably fixed, above which the 
inferior court of the allies had no jurisdiction, whil# cases 
relating to higher sums were referred to Athens. . . Ther» 
can be no doubt that public and penal causes were to a great 
extent decided in Athens, and the few definite statements 
which are extant refer to lawsuits of this nature." — Boeckh, 
Pol. Econ. of Athens, vol. ii. p. 142, 143, translation. 


torians his policy and pretensions in this depart- book 
merit have not been sufficiently considered ; yet, CHAp 
undoubtedly, they made one of the most promi- u - 
nent features of his public character in the eyes of 
his countrymen. He is the first minister in 
Athens who undertook the scientific management 
of the national revenues, and partly from his 
scrupulous integrity, partly from his careful I 
dom, and partly from a fortunate concurrence 
of circumstances, the Athenian revenues, even 
when the tribute was doubled, were never more 
prosperously administered. The first great 
source of the revenue was from the tributes of 
the confederate cities.* These, rated at four 
hundred and sixty talents in the time of Aris- 
tides, had increased to >ix hundred in the time 

* In calculating the amount of the treasure when trans- 
fer! ccl to Athens, Hoeckh, (Pol. Eton, of Athens, voL i. p. 
198, translation,) is greatly milled by an error of iL. 
lie assume! that the fund had only existed ten years when 
brought to Athens : whereas it had existed about seven- 
teen, viz. from b. c. 477 — to b. c. 461, or rather B. c. 460. 
And this would give about the amount affirmed by Diodorus, 
xii. p. 88, (\\/.. nearly 8,000 talents,) though he afterwards 
* raises it to 10,000. But a large portion of it must have been 
consumed in war before the transfer. Still Boeckh rates the 
total of the sum transferred far too low, when he says it can- 
not have exceeded 1800 talents. It more probably 
doubled that sum. 

454 Aiii 

bom of Pericles; but then ii do evidence to pi 
that the idONOJod ran was unfairh raised, 
"• that fresh exactions vrere levied, sate in ran 
cases,* on tin- original subs cri b er s to the 
league. The increase of a hundred and i 
talmts is to be e co o o ated l«>r partly by the quota 
of additional confederacies acquired since the 
time of Aristades, partly by the exemption I 
military or maritime service, voluntarily it" un- 
wisely pnrchaaed, daring the administration of 
Cimon, by the states ihttmiolTfin So far as 
tribute was a sign of dependence and inferiority, 
the impost was a hardship ; but for this they 
who paid it are to be blamed rather than tl 
who received. Its practical burthen on < 
state, at this period, appears, in most cases, 
to have been incredibly light; and a very trifling 
degree of research will prove how absurdly ex- 
aggerated have been the invectives of ignorant 
or inconsiderate men, whether in ancient or mo- 
dern times, on the extortions of the Athenians, 
and the impoverishment of their allies. Aris- 
tophanes! attributes to the empire of Athens a 
thousand tributary cities : the number is doubt- 
less a poetical licence ; yet when we remember 
the extent of territory which the league com- 

* Such as Eubcea, see p. 440. f Vesp. Aristoph. 79.5. 



prehended, and how crowded with cities were 
all the coasts and islands of Greece, we should MA| 
probably fall short of the number of tributary _^_ 
cities if we estimated it at six bundled ; so that 
the tribute would not in the time of Perietal aver- 
age above a talent, or '241/. 135. Ad* English 
money, for each city ! Even when, in a time of 
urgent demand on the resources of the state,f 
Cythera fell into the hands of the Athenians,;]; 
the tribute of that island was assessed but at 
four talents. And we find by inscriptions still 
extant, that some places were rated only at two 
thousand, and even one thousand drachm: 

Finally, if the assessment by Aristides, of four 
hundred and sixty talents, was such as to give 
universal satisfaction from its equity and mode- 
ration, the additional hundred and forty talent- 
in the time of Pericles could not have been an 
ssive increase, when we consider how much 
the League had extended, how many >tates had 
exchanged the service for the tribute, and how r 
considerable was the enlarged diffusion of wealth 
throughout the greater part of Greece, the con- 

* Knight's Prolegomena to Homer; see alio Boeckh, 
(translation,) vol. i. b.25. 

f Viz. b.c. 424 ; 01. 89. ; Thueyd. iv. 57. 

§ See Chandler's Inscript. 


i,)ij \ i : 

hook turned ij.ilu.v of gold, 4 and the confluent fell [a 

[|ai> Millie of The ]»rcci0U8 Ill.ti.N. 

E. IV. It was Dot, tli. n, tfae amount of the tribute 
wlii.ii made it- haidabip, nor can the Athenian 

gov. in in. nt l„. 1,1s,,,,, . ( i f OT having continued ■ 

In the time of Aleibia.les the trihin. | «l to 

one thousand three hundred talents, and mi 
'>»<<' MM iiiu-cj. .ally assessed, if i, »Cn really the pecuniary 
hardship the allies insisted upon and complained of. But the 
resistance made to imposts uj.o,. matteriof feel 
inourown country, as, at this day, in the case of church-rate* 
may show the real nature of the grievance. It irai not the 
amount paid, hut partly the degradation of paying it, and 
partly, perhaps resentment, in many places, at some unfair 

aateaament Discontent exage; ery burthen, and a 

feather is as heavy as a mountain when laid on unwilling 
shoulders. When the new arrangement was made by Alci- 
biades, or the later demagogues, A ndocides asserts that some 
of the allies left their native countries and emigrated to 
Thurii. But how many Englishmen have emigrated to 
America from objections to a peculiar law or a peculiar 
impost, which state policy still vindicates, or state necessity 
still maintains I The Irish Catholic peasant in reality would 
not perhaps, be much better off, in a pecuniary point of view, 
if the tithes were transferred to the rental of the landlord, yet 
Irish Catholics have emigrated in hundreds from the oppres- 
sion, real or imaginary, of Protestant tithe-owners. Whether 
in ancient times or modern, it is not the amount of taxation 
that makes the grievance. People will pay a pound for what 
they like, and grudge a farthing for what they hate. I have 
myself known men quit England because of the stamp duty 
on newspapers ! 



claim voluntarily conceded to them. The ori- book 
ginal object of the tribute was the maintenance C11AP 
of a league against the Barbarians ; — the Athe- _^ 
Diana were constituted the heads of the league, 
and the guardians of the tribute ; some states 
refused service, and offered money— their own 
offers were accepted ; other states refused both ; — 
it was not more the interest than the duty of 
Athens to maintain, even by arms, the condition 
of the League ; — so far is her policy justifiable. 
But she erred when she reduced allies to de- 
pendents — she erred when she transferred the 
treasury from the central Delos to her own state 
— she erred yet more when she appropriated a 
portion of these treasurei to her own purposes. 
But these vices of Athens are the vices of all 
eminent states, monarchic or republican — for 
they are the \ ices of the powerful. " It was," 
say the Athenian ambassadors in Thucvdides, 
with honest candour and profound truth, — "it 
was from the nature of the thing itself that we 
were at first compelled to advance our empire to 
what it is — chiefly through fear — next for honour 
— and, lastly, for interest ; and then it seemed 
no longer safe for us to venture to let go the 
reins of government, for the revolters would 
have gone over to you," (viz., to the Spartans.)* 
* Thucyd. lib. i. c. 75 ; Bloomfield's Translation. 


"«>"K Thus docs tlit- imivri>al 1,>s.,i, of hist, 
CHAP. " S t,IUt h * ,,,, ■ '«"'hn,y of Pa! 

"• bandisoeve? it be placed, to widen iti limits, 
to u i.-iv;,,,. iti vigour, in proportion ai tl 
teracting force raeigm the security for it* admi- 
iiisti;.tion, qi the remedy lor in tbv 

V* '' W art scrupled, from the da* 

Ihc tnui.frroftJi,: Xretjuryto Atheni 
ac<)ii>i,irr :i |,i (; proportion of the genera] tribute 
topuMie building and stored wdubition*— pu* 
poses purely Athenian. But be did bo openly-, 
he sought no evasion or diegu maintained 

in the face of Greece that the Athenians were 
not responsible to the allies for these contribu- 
tions, that it was the Athenians who bad 
and defended the Barbarians, while many of the 
confederate states had supplied neither ships nor 
soldiers, that Athens was now the head of R 
mighty league, and, that to increase her glory, 
to cement her power, was a duty she owed no 
less to the allies than to herself. Arguments to 
which armies, and not orators, could alone 

* A sentiment thus implied by the Athenian ambassadors j 
"We are not the first who began the custom which has ever 
been an established one, that the weaker shouldbe kept under 
by the stronger." The Athenians had, however, an excuse more 
powerful than that of the ancient Rob Roys. It was the 


The principal other sources whence the Athe- BOOK 
nian revenue was derived, it may be desirable CHAp 
here to state as briefly and as clearly SJ the na- U 
ture of the subject will allow. By tAOM m ha 
would search more deeply, the long and elaboi 
statistics of Boeckh must be carefully explond. 
Those sources of revenue were — 

1st. Rents from corporate estate! — such as 
pastures, forests, rivers, N It- works, houses, 
theatres, &c. and mines, let for terms of yea 
or on heritable leases. 

2ndly. Tolls, export and import duties, pro- 
bably paid only by strangers, and amounting 
to two per cent., a market . and the 

twentieth part of all exports and imports levied 
in the dependent allied cities — the leal ■ con- 
siderable item. 

3dly. Tithes, levied only on lands held in 
usufruct, as estates belonging to temples. 

general opinion of the time that the revolt of dependent Allien 
might be fairly punished hy one that could punish them — (so 
the Corinthians take care to observe.) And it does not appear 
that the Athenian empire at this period was more harsh than 
that of other states to their dependents. The Athenian am- 
bassadors (Thucyd. i. 78) not only quote the far more gall- 
ing oppressions the Ionians and the isles had undergone from 
the Mede, but hint that the Spartans had been found much 
harder masters than the Athenians. 

46'0 ATHKSS : 

lu " 4thly. A protection tax,* paid by th< 

or Metceci, common to most of the Greek 
jl - but peculiarly productive in Athena from the 
number of itrangen that her trade, her 
tivals, aiif 1 In r renown attracted. The policy 
of Pericles could not fail to increase this source 
of revenue* 

5thly. A slave tax of three oboli per Iiead.t 

Most of tin -<• taxes appear to have been la: 

Gthly. Judicial fees and fines. As ire have 
seen that the allies in most important trials » 
compelled to seek justice in Athens, this, in the 
time of Pericles, was a profitable source of in- 
come. But it was one, the extent of which 
necessarily depended upon peace. 

Fines were of many classes, but not, at least 
in this period, of very great value to the state. 
Sometimes (as in all private accusations) the fine 
fell to the plaintiff, sometimes a considerable 
proportion enriched the treasury of the tutelary 
goddess. The task of assessing the fines was 
odious, and negligently performed by the autho- 
rities, while it was easy for those interested to 
render a false account of their property. 

* Only twelve drachmae each yearly ; the total, therefore, 
is calculated by the inestimable learning of Boeck not to 
have exceeded twenty-one talents. 

f Total estimated at thirty-three talent*. 



Lastly. The state received the aid of annual BO i )K 
contributions, or what were termed liturgies, CHX |, 
from individuals for particular services. 

The ordinary liturgies were, 1st. The Cho- 
regia, or duty of furnishing the chorus for the 
plays — tragic , comic, and satirical — of remune- 
rating the leader of the singers and musicians — 
of maintaining the latter while trained — of sup- 
plying the dresses, the golden crowns and dm 
and, indeed, the general decorations and equip- 
ments of the theatre. He on whom this 
burthensome honour fell was called Choregus ; 
his name, and that of his tribe, was recorded on 
the tripod which commemorated the victory of 
the successful poet, whose performances were 

2ndly. The Gymnasiarehy, or charge of pro- 
viding for the expense of the torch-race, celebrated 
in honour of the gods of Fire, and some other 
sacred games. In later times the gymnasiarehy 
comprised the superintendence of the training 
schools, and the cost of ornamenting the arena. 

3rdly. The Architheoria, or task of maintain- 
ing the embassy to sacred games and festivals. 

* The state itself contributed largely to the plays, and 
the lessee of the theatre was also bound to provide for se- 
veral expenses, in consideration of which he received the 
entrance money. 

A('r2 atiii 

■001 And, 4tlilv, the lle-.ti.i-i-. Of feasting Of flu: 

rnA1 , tribe-, I COStly obligation incurred by souk: 
u - wealthy member of each tribe for entertaining 
the whole of tin: tribe at public, but not 
luxurious l>;m<|urN. Thii lasl expense < 1 i « i 
often occur. The ln'Mia-is was intended for 
sacred objects, eoeuMOted with the rites of ; 
pitality, and served to confirm the friendly in- 
tercourse between tin- member* of the tribe. 

These three ordinary litOTgief bod all a re- 
ligious character ; they were compulsory on 
those possessed of property not less than three 
talents — they were discharged in turn by the 
tribes, except when volunteered by indivi- 

VI. The expenses incurred for the defence 
or wants of the state were not regular, but ex- 
traordinary liturgies — such as the Trierakciiv, 
or equipment of ships, which entailed also the 
obligation of personal service on those by whom 
the triremes were fitted out. Personal service 
was indeed the characteristic of all liturgies 
property-tax, which was not yet invented, alone 
excepted ; and this, though bearing the name, 
has not the features, of a liturgy. Of the extra- 
ordinary liturgies, the trierarchy was the most 
important. It was of very early origin. Boeckh 


observes* that it was mentioned in the time of book 


Hippias. At the period of which we treat each CHAP 
vessel had one trierarch. The vessel was given u - 
to the trierarch, sometimes ready equipped ; he 
also received the public money for certain - 
penses ; others fell on himself.t Occasionally, 
but rarely, an ambitious or patriotic trieran-li 
defrayed the whole cost ; but in any case he ren- 
dered strict account of the expenses incurred. 
The cost of a whole trierarchy was not less than 
forty minas, nor more than a talent. 

VIII. Two liturgies could not be demanded 
simultaneously from any individual, nor « 
he liable to any one more often than every other 
year. He who served the trierarchie- irai I 
emoted from all other contributions. Orpin. 

were exempted till the year alter they had ob- 
tained their majority, and I similar exemption 
was, in a very few instances, the inward of eminent 
public services. The nine Archons were also ex- 
empted from the trierarchies. 

\ III. The moral delects of liturgies were the 
defects of a noble theory, which almost alwa\ i 

* On the authority of Pseud. Arist. CEcon. 2 — 4. 

f In the expedition ■gainst Sicily the state supplied the 
vessel and paid the crew. The trierarchs equipped the ship 
and gave voluntary contributions besides. — Thucyd. vi. 31. 


\ I Ml 

■ooi terminates in practical abuses. Their princii 
,.„. was that of making it an honour to contrib 

CH A P. 

h- to the public splendour, or the national wants. 
Hence, in the earlier times, an emulation among 

the rieh t<> purchase favour in s Liberal, but 
often calculating and interested, ostentation ; — 
hence, among the poor, actuated by an equal 
ambition, was created so great a necessity for 
riches as the means to power,* thai the mode by 
which they were to be acquired sras often o 
looked. What the theory designed as the mu- 
nificence of patriotism, became in practice but 
a showy engine of corruption ; and men vied 
with each other in the choregia or the trierarehy, 
not so much for the sake of service done to the 
state, as in the hope of influence accpiired over the 
people. I may also observe, that in a merely 
fiscal point of view, the principle of liturgies 
was radically wrong ; that principle went to 
tax the few, instead of the many ; its opera- 
tion was therefore not more unequal in its assess- 

* Liturgies, with most of the Athenian laws that seemed 
to harass the rich personally, enhanced their station and au- 
thority politically. It is clear that wherever wealth is made 
most obviously available to the state, there it will be most 
universally respected. Thus is it ever in commercial coun- 
tries. In Carthage of old, where, according to Aristotle, " 
wealth was considered virtue, and in England at this day, 
where wealth, if not virtue, is certainly respectability. 


merits than it was unproductive to the state, in book 

proportion to its burthen on individual-. 

IX. The various duties were farmed — a per- IL 
nicious plan of finance common to most of the 
Greek states. The farmers gave sureties, ami 
punctuality was rigorously exacted from them, 

on penalty of imprisonment, the doubling of the 
debt, the confiscation of their properties, the 
compulsory hold upon their sunt i 

X. Such were the main sources of the Athe- 
nian revenue. Opportunities will occur to till 
up the brief outline, and amplify each detail. 
This sketch is now presented to the reader 
comprising a knowledge necessary to a clear in- 
sight into the policy of Pericles. A rapid glance 
over the preceding pages will suffice to show that 
it was on a rigid avoidance of all onnec 
sary war — above all, of distant and perilous 
enterprises, that the revenue of Ath< 
rested. Her commercial duties — her tax on 
settlers — the harvest of judicial fees, obtained 
from the dependent allies — the chief profits from 
the mines, — all rested upon the maintenance of 
peace : even the foreign tribute, the most 
productive of the Athenian resources, might fail 
at once, if the Athenian arms should sus- 
tain a single reverse, as indeed it did alter the 

VOL. II. II h 




u fatal buttle .* Thil it was which 

might have bIiowii to t 
thai peace ■ itli the Peloponm 
be too (l<arly pttrcbaoed.1 The surrend* 
few towai an<l fortresses was DOthing in co 
ptrifloi) with the arrest and paralysis of all 
springs of lier wealth, which would he the ne- 
cessary result of a long war upon hi oil. 
For this reason Pericles strenuously i I all 

* And so well aware of the uncertain and artificial tenure 
of the Athenian power M < -men, that w« 

find it among the arguments with which the Corinth 
some time after supported the lYloponncsian war, * that 
Athenians, if they lost one sea-fight, would he utt 
dued ;'' — nor, even without such a mischance, could the fla 
of a war be kindled, but what the obvious expedient' of the 
enemy would be to excite the Athenian allies to r< 
the stoppage or diminution of the tribute would be the ne- 
cessary consequence. 

f If the courts of law among the allies were not renin 
to Athens till after the truce with Peloponnesus, and indeed 
till after the ostracism of Thucydides, the rival of Pericles, 
the value of the judicial fees did not of course make one of 
the considerations for peace, but there would then have been 
the mightier consideration of the design of that transfer 
which peace only could effect. 

1 Thucyd. lib. i. c. 121. 

' As the Corinthians indeed suggested, Thucyd. lib. i.c 122. 


the wild schemes of the Athenian- for extended hook 
empire. Yet dazzled with the glories of Cimon, 

1 & ' CUM'. 

lome entertained the hopes of recovering Egypt, L 
some agitated the invasion of the Persian ootsi 

the fair and fatal Sicily already an>u-ed the 
cupidity or ambition of other- ; and the vain 
enthusiasts of the Agora even dreamed of 
making that island the ba-e and centre of 
a new and v;i<t dominion, including Car- 
tilage on one hand, and Etrtiria on the other.* 

Such schemes it was the great object <>t* Pericles 

It oppose. lit* W81 not less ambitions for the 
greatness of Athens than the most daring of 

these visionaries ; but he better understood on 

what foundations it should be built. Hi- obj 
were to strengthen the j>o--t- Ireadv ac- 

quired, to confine the Athenian energies within 
the frontiers of Greece, and to curb, as might 
better be done by peace than war. the lVlo- 
ponnesian forces to their own rocky barriers. 
The means by which he sought to attain tb 
objects were, 1st. by a maritime force ; -imlly, 
by that inert and silent power which Bpril 
it were from the moral dignity and renown of 
a nation ; — whatever, in this litter respect, could 
make Athens illustrious, made Athens formid- 

* Pint, in vit. Per. 

ii ii J 

K'» s \ i hiss : 

hook XI. Then rapidly progressed those glorious 

fabrics which seemed, as Plutarch gracefully 

ii. c\; it, endowed with the bloom of a peren- 

nial youth. Still the houses of private <-iti 
remained simple and unadorned ; still were tin- 
streets narrow and irregular ; and i utn- 
ries afterwards, a stranger entering Athens 
would not at first bare recognised the claim- of 
the mistress of Grecian art. Bnt to the homeli- 
ness of her common thoroughfares and pri 
mansions, the magnificence of her public" edifices 
now made a dazzling contrast. The Acropolis 
that towered above the homes and thorough!', 
of men — a spot too sacred for human habitation 
— became, to use a proverbial phrase, u a 
City of the Gods." The citizen was every wl 
to be reminded of the majesty of the State — his 
patriotism was to be increased by the pride in 
her beauty — his taste to be elevated by the spec- 
tacle of her splendour. Thus flocked to Athens 
all who throughout Greece were eminent in art. 
Sculptors and architects vied with each other in 
adorning the young Empress of the Seas;* then 
rose the masterpieces of Phidias, of Callicrates, 
of Mnesicles,t which, even, either in their broken 

* " Asa vain woman decked out with jewels," was the 
sarcastic reproach of the allies. — Flut. in vit Per. 

■\ The Propylaea was built under the direction of Mnesi< 


remains, or in the feeble copies of imitators Lett BOOK 

inspired, still command SO intense a wonder, and * 

furnish models so immortal. And it, so to ftp II. 

their bones and relics excite our awe and en 

M testifying of a lovelier and grander race, which 

the deluge of time has swept away, what, in 
that day, must have been their brilliant effect — 
unmutilated in their fair proportions — fresh in 

all their lineaments and hues ! For their beauty 
was not limited to the symmetry of arch and 
column, nor their materials confined to the mar- 
bles of Pentelicus and Paros. Even the exterior 
of the temples glowed with the richest harmony 
ofcolours, and was decorated with thepure-t gold; 

an atmosphere peculiarly favourable both to the 
display and the preservation of art, permitted to 
external pediments and friezes all the ininute- 
ue&i of ornament — all the brilliancy ofcolours; — 
such as in the interior of Italian churches may 
yet be seen-— vitiated, in the last, by a gaudy 
and barbarous taste. Nor did the Athenians 
spare any cost upon the works that were, like 
the tombs and tripods of their heroes, to be the 
monuments of a nation to distant ages, and to 
transmit the most irrefragable proof ' that the 

It was begun 437 B.c.,in thearchonship of Euthymenes, thrte 
years after the Saniian war, and completed in five years. — 
Harpocrat. in TrpoirvXatu tuvtu. 

170 All! 

nook power of ancient Gh in idle l< . 

nm , The whole demon mimated with the 

H - passion of Pericles; ami when Phidi m- 

mended marble a- a cheaper material than iv< 
for the great atataa of Minerva, it waaforl 
reaaon that ivory was preferred by the iinani- 
inous voice of the assembly. Thus, whether it 
were extravagance or magnificence, the blame 
one case, the admiration in another, n 
more with the minister than the populace. It I 
indeed, the great eharaet. -ristic of those works, 
that tiny were entirely tin; creation- of the 

people: without the people, Periclea oould not 
have built a temple, or engaged a sculptor. The 

miracles of that day resulted from the enthu- 
siasm of a population yet young — full of the first 
ardour for the Beautiful — dedicating to the State, 
as to a mistress, the trophies honourahly won, or 
the treasures injuriously extorted — and uniting 
the resources of a nation with the energy of an 
individual, hecause the toil, the cost, were borne 
by those who succeeded to the enjoyment and 
arrogated the glory. 

XII. It was from two sources that Athens 
derived her chief political vices ; 1st, Her em- 
pire of the seas, and her exactions from her 
allies ; 2ndly, an unchecked, unmitigated 

* PluU in vit. Per. 


democratic action, void of the two vents known u 
in all modern commonwealths— the Press, and a 

C 1 1 A I . 

Representative, instead of a Popular, assembly, n- 
But from these sources she now drew all her 
greatness also, moral and intellectual. Before 
the Persian war, and even scarcely bel 
the time of CimoB, Athens cannot be said to 
have eclipsed her neighbours in the arts and 
sciences. She became the centre and capital <>f 
the most polished communities of Greece, and she 
drew into a focus all the Grecian intellect ; she 

obtained from her dependents the wealth to ad- 
minister the arts, which universal traffic and 
intercourse taught her to appreciate ; and thus 
the Odeon, and the Parthenon, and the Pro- 
pyhea arose! During the Same administration, 
the fortifications were completed, and a third 
wall, parallel* and near to that uniting Piiv 
with Athens, consummated the i : The- 

mistocles and Cimon, and pi ! the com- 

munication between the two-fold city, even 
should the outer walls fall into the hands of 
an enemy. 

But honour and wealth alone would not have 
sufficed for the universal emulation, the universal 
devotion to all that could adorn or exalt the na- 
tion. It was the innovations of Aristides and 
Ephialtes that breathed into that abstract and 

* See Arnold's Thucydides, ii. 13, note 12. 

\7'2 ATIII \ 

booi cold formality, thi the breath and 

of a pervading people, and made the i 
ii. ' citizen struggle for Athens with thai ith 

which an ambitious statesman struggles for him- 
self.* These two cause* united reveal to us the 
true secret why Athena obtained a pre-eminence 
in intellectual grandeur over the rest of( 
Had Corinth obtained th<- command of the * 

and the treasury of Delos — had ( 'orintli i 

bliahed, abroad, a power equally arbitrary and 
extensive, and, at home, a democracy equally 

broad and pure — Corinth might have had her 

Pericles and Demosthenes, her Phidias, her 

phocles, her Aristophanes, her Plato — and pos- 
terity might not have allowed the claim of Athen- 
to be the sXAac t\\a$oq, " the Greece of Greece." 
XIII. But the increase of wealth hounded not 
its effects to these magnificent works of art— they 
poured into and pervaded the whole domestic 
policy of Athens. We must recollect, that as 
the greatness of the State was that of the demo- 
cracy, so its treasures were the property of the 
free population. It was the People who were 
rich ; and according to all the notions of po- 
litical economy in that day, the people de- 

* " Their bodies, too, they employ for the state, as if they 
were any one's else but their own, but with minds com- 
pletely their own, they are ever ready to render it service." 
— Thucyd. i. 70, Bloomfield's translation. 


sired practically to enjoy their own opulence. B( ^ 
Thus was introduced the principle of payment ( llu , 
for service, and thus was sanctioned and legal- ^_ 
bed the right of a common admission to specta- 
cles, the principal cost of which was defrayed 
from common property. That such innovati 
would be the necessary and unavoidable result 
of an overflowing' treasury in a state thus demo- 
cratic, is so obvious, that nothing can be more 
absurd than to lav the blame of the change upon 
Pericles. He only yielded to, and regulated, the 
irresistible current of the general wish. And we 
may also observe, that most of those innovations, 
which were ultimately injurious to Athena, rcttf 
upon the acknowledged maxims of modern civili- 
sation, — some were rather erroneous from details 
than principles ; others, from tin- want of har- 
nionv between the new principles and the old 
constitution to which they were applied. Each 
of the elements might be healthful — amalga- 
mated, they produced a poison. 

XIV. It is, for instance, an axiom in modern 
politics, that judges should receive a salary.* 

* With us juries as well as judges are paid, and in ordinary 
. at as low a rate as the Athenian dicasts, (the different 
value of money being considered,) viz. common jurymen one 
shilling for each trial, and, in the Sheriffs' Court, fourpence. 
What was so pernicious in Athens is perfectly harmless in 
England; it was the large number of the dicasts which 

17 I 

booi Daring the administration <>f Pericles, 1 1 1 i — qj 
( ciple was applied t<> the dicasts, in tl 1U1 

"• courts of judicatun cms probable that I 

i acjc onion of law business which ensued from 
the transfer of the courts in tin- allied state* to 
the Athenian tribunal, was tin- cs this 

enactment. Lawauisi became so common, th 
was impossible, without salaries, that the citizens 
coold abandon their own bonnets for that of others, 
Payment was, th er efor e , both equitable and un- 
avoidable, ami doubtless, it would hare seemed 
to the Athenians as now to u-, ti 
m»t only of securing the attention, but ^th- 

eiring the integrity, of the judges or the juror-. 
The principle of salaries wai . right, 

but its results were evil, when applied to the 
peculiar constitution of the courts. The salary 
was small — the judges numerous, and mostly of 
the humblest class — the consequences I have 
before shown.* Had the salaries been high, and 
the number of the judges small, the means of a 
good judicature would have been attained. But, 
then, according to the notions, not only of Athe- 
nian, but of all the Hellenic, democracies, the de-J 
mocracy itself, of which the popular courts were 
deemed the constitutional bulwark and the vital 

made the mischief, and not the system of payment itself, as 
unreflecting writers have so often asserted. 
* See pp. 391—393 of this volume. 


uce, would have been at an end. In thi< book 
error, therefore, however fatal it nii^htbe, neither 
Pericles nor the Athenians, but the theories of n. 
the age, are to be blamed.* It is also a maxim 
formerly acted upon in England, to whieh 
many political philosophers now incline, and 
which is yet adopted in the practice of B great and 
enlightened portion of the world, that the mem- 
bers of the legislative assembly should 
laries. This principle wi ppliedin fVrbfSM t 

But there, the people themselves were the legis- 
lative assembly — and thus, a principle, perhaps, 
sound in itself, became vitiated to the ibsurttitj 
the people as sovereign paying the people as legis- 
lative. Vet even this might have been neoeaa 
to the preservation of the constitution, as m« 
ings became numerous and busi ■plicated ; 

for if the people had not been tempted and e\ 
driven to assemble in large masses, the busineas 
of the state would have been jobbed away by 
active minorities, ami the life of a deinocr. 

* At tirst the payment of the is one obolus. — 

(Aristoph. Nubes, 861.) Afterwards, under t'lcon, it seems 
to have been increased to three ; it is doubtful whether it was 
fal the interval ever two obols. Constant mistakes are made 
between the pay, and even the constitution, of the eecleau 
and the dieasts. But the reader must carefully remember 
that the ibrnier were the popular ln/Ulator*, the latter, the 
populur/Wyo or jurors — their i unctions were a mixture of both. 

f MiaOdi; e*.k\?j<7uioTuo« — the pay of the eccloiasts, or 
popular assembly. 

•J7(i hi *• : 

BOOS been lost.* Tlir jciyim nt \\;i~ fir-f OUC obols 
afterwards in< to thr< i . Nor in 


ii. suppose, ;is tlir ignor rtain 

modem historians has itrangelj ted, that 

in the new <\ -.-triii of payments, the people irers 
munificent only to th< was 

|>;ti«l — the public ad and i 

paid— to were the ambassadors, the i 

the youths in the trading schools, the oomothetss 

or Uw*eommissioners, the physici 

r\ en the poets ; — all the servants of the different 
offices received salaries. And noa the 

inevitable consequence of that civilisation in s 
commercial society which multiplies and 
demarcates the divisions of labour — I ty of 

the state no longer rested solely upon the un- 
purchased arms and hearts of its citizens — but 
not only were the Athenians themselves who 
served as soldiers paid, but foreign mercenaries 
were engaged — a measure in consonance with 
the characteristic policy of Pericles, which was 
especially frugal of the lives of the citizens. 
But peculiar to the Athenians, of all the Grecian 

* We know not how far the paying of the ecclesiasts was 
the work of Pericles : if it were, it must have been at, or 
after, the time we now enter upon, as, according to Aristo- 
phanes, (Eccles. 302,) the people were not paid during the 
power of Myronides, who flourished, and must have fallen, 
with Thucydides, the defeated rival of Pericles. 

its nisi: and FALL. 477 

states, was the humane and beautiful provision hook 

for the poor, commenced under Solon or Pia 

c 1 1 \ 1 * 
tratus. At this happy and brilliant period few n. 

Were in need of it — war and disaster, while th 
increased the number of the destitute, widened 
the charity of the state 

XV. Thus, then, that general system of pay- 
ment which grew up under Pericles, and pro- 
duced many abuses under his successors, w 
after all, but the necessary result of the increased 
civilisation and opulence of the period. Nor can 
W6 wonder that the humbler or the middle ord< 
who, from their common stock, lavished <••<■- 
rosity upon genius,* and alone, of all contempo- 
raneous itates, gare relief to want — who main- 
tained the children of all who died in war— who 
awarded remunerations for uld 

have deemed it no grasping exaction to require 

for their own attendance on offices forced on 
them by the constitution, a compensation for the 
desertion of their private affairs, little exceeding 
that which was conferred upon the \ cry paupers 
of the state i" 

* The Athenians could extend their munificence even to 
foreigners, as their splendid gift, said to have been conferred 
"ten Herodotus, and the sum often thousand drachmas, which 
Isoerates declares them to have bestowed on Pindar. 1 

t The pay of the dicast and the ecclcsiast was, as ire haw 
just seen, first one, then three, obols ; and the money paid to 

1 Isoc. de Antidosi. 




BOOK XVI. lint there was another aim- 

chap. sprang out of the wealth of th< people, and tli:it 
love for spectacles and exhibitions which 
natural t<» the lively [#nic Imagination, 
could not but Inci leisure and refinement 

became boom extended to the bulk of 1 1 1 <- }>opu- 
lation— an abuse trifling in itself— fatal in the 
precedent it set. While the theatre was of w< 
free admissions were found to produ 

concourse for the stability <•!' the buildii 
and once, indeed, the seats gave way. It < 
therefore, long before the present period, deemed 
advisable to limit the number of the audi' 
a small payment of two obols for cad. and 

this continued after a stately edifice of st 
placed the wooden temple of the earlier drama. 

But as riches flowed into the treasury, and as 
the drama became more and more the most 
splendid and popular of the national exhibits 
it seemed but just to return to the ancient mode 
of gratuitous admissions. It was found, however, 
convenient, partly, perhaps, for greater order, 
and for the better allotment of the seats — partly, 
also, for the payment of several expenses which 

the infirm was never less than one, nor more than two, obols 
a-day. The common sailors, in time of peace, received four 
obols a-day. Neither an ecclesiast nor a dicast was, there- 
fore, paid so much as a common sailor. 


fell not on the state but individuals— and partly, BOOK 

no doubt, to preserve the distinctions betw< 

' » LP. 

the citizens and the strangers, to maintain the II. 
prices, but to allow to those whose uann - 
cm oiled in the book of the citizens, the admit- 
tance money from the public treasury. Thi- 
fund was called the ThEORICON. But the exam- 
ple once set, Theories were extended to other 
festivals besides those of the drama,* ami 
finally, under the plausible and popular pfefc 
of admitting the poorer classes to those national 
or religious festivals, from which, as forming the 

bulk of the nation, it \\a> against the theorv of 
the constitution to exclude them, paved the way 
to lavish distributions of the public inon- 
which at once tended to exhaust the wealth of 
the state, and to render effeminate and frivolous 
the spirit of the people. But these abus< 
not yet visible : on the co n tr ar y, under Perici 
the results of the Theoricon were highly favour- 
able to the manners and genius of the people. 
Art was thus rendered the universal right, and 
while refinement of taste became diffused, the 
patriotism of the citizens was increased by 
the consciousness that they were the common 

* Such as the Panathena'a and Hieromenia\ 


A Till 

boor and Legitimate arbiter! of ;ill which augm< 


the splendour and renown of Athi 

ii. Thus, in fact, the after evils that result 

the more popular pari of the interna] j>ol j. 

Pericles, it was impossible to foresee; they ori* 

uinatrd not in a lingle tan, but in the 

very nature of civilisation. And aa in despotii 
■ coarse and sensual luxury, oace sstablisl 
rot- tin- rigour and manhood of s con- 

quertag people, to in thii intellectual republic it 
was the luxury of the in! hich gradually 

enervated the great spirit of the rictor race of 
Marathon and Salami-, and called up gem 
tions of eloquent talkers and philosophical 
dreamers from the earlier age of active freen. 
restless adventurers, and hardy warriors. The 
spirit of poetry, or the pampered indulgence of 
certain faculties to the prejudice of others, pro- 
duced in a whole people what it never fail 
produce in the individual : — It unfitted them — 
just as they grew up into a manhood exposed to 
severer struggles than their youth had under- 
gone — for the stern and practical demands of 
life ; and suffered the love of the Beautiful to 
subjugate or soften away the common knowledge 
of the Useful. Genius itself became a disease, 
and Poetry assisted towards the euthanasia of the 


XVII. As all the measures of Perieles were book 

directed towards consolidating the Athenian em- 

( HAP. 

pi re, so under his administration was not omitted "• 
the politic expedient of colonisation. Of 1 
years, states having become confirmed and tri 
settled, the Grecian migrations were far 1. 
quent than of old ; and one principal cause of 
colonisation, in the violent feud of parties, and 
the expulsion of a considerable number of citi- 
zens, arose from the flllftttfifl of infant commu- 
nities, and was no longer in force, under the 
free but strong government of Athens. As with 
the liberties fell the commerce of MiletUS and 
Ionia, so also another principal source of the old 
colonisation became comparatively languid and 
inert. But now, under the name of t/leruehi,* 
a new description of colonists arose — coloni-t- hv 
whom the mother country not only dratted off a 
redundant population, or rid herself of rest] 
adventurers, but struck the roots of her empire 
in the various places that came under her con- 
trol. In the classic as in the feudal age, con- 
quest gave the right to the lands of the con- 
quered country. Thus had arisen, and thus still 
existed, upon the plundered lands of Laconia, 

* From (XqpM, lots. The estates and settlements of a 
cleruchia were divided amongst a certain number of citizens 
by lot. 





482 \tiii v 

book the Commonwcnltli of Sparta, — thus were main- 
tained the wealthy and luxurious nobles of Th 

-:il\ -and thus, in fin**, wore created all tin* 

ancient Dorian oligarchies. Alter the return of 
the llrn«-li(l;i\ this made of consummating con- 
quest fell into disuse, not from ;my mot 
viction of it-; injustice, bul because tli<- * 
tweeu the various rarely terminated in 

victories so complete ;i~ to permit the seizor* 
the land and she subjugation of tin- inhabitants. 
Ami it must be ever remembered, that the old 
Grecian tribes made war to procur 
and not to increase dominion. Tin; imalln 
of their population rendered human life too 
valuable to risk it- waste in the expedition that 
characterised the ambition of the leaders of 
Oriental hordes. But previous to the Persian 
wars, the fertile meadows of Eubcea presen 
to the Athenians a temptation it could scarce] v 
be expected that victorious neighbours would 
have the abstinence to forego ; and we b 
seen that they bestowed the lands of the Hippo- 
botae on Athenian settlers. These colonists 
evacuated their possessions during the Persian 
war : the Hippobotae returned, and seem to have 
held quiet, but probably tributary, possession of 
their ancient estates, until after the recent re- 
treat of the Peloponnesians. Pericles defeated 


and displaced them ; their lands fell once more book 


to Athenian colonist^ ; and tlic north of Kubcea 

, , , 1IAP - 

was protected and garrisoned by the erection ot ii. 

Oreus, a new town that supplanted the old lli — 
tiaa. Territories in Scyros, Lemnos, and Imhr 
had been also bestowed on Athenian settli 
during the earlier of the Athenian 

arms — and the precedent thus set, examples be- 
came more numerous, under th I profound ami 

systematic policy of Pericles. This mode of co- 
lonisation, besides the ordinary advantages of 
all colonisation, proffered two peculiar to itself. 
In the first place, it supplied the deficiency of 
land, which was one of the main inconveniences 
of Attica, and rewarded the meritorious or ap- 
peased the avaricious citizens, wit! which 
it did not impoverish the mother country to 
grant. 2ndly. It secured the conquests of the 

state by planting garrisons which ir COSt little 

to maintain.* Thus were despatched by Pericles 

a thousand men to the valuable possessions 
in the Chersonese, two hundred and fifty to 
Andres, five hundred to Naxos, a thousand to 
Thrace. At another period, the date of which 
is uncertain, bur probably shortly subsequent to 

* The state only provided the settler> with arms, and de- 
frayed the expenses of their journey. — See Boecfch. Pol. Ecoa. 
of Athens, vol. ii. p. 170. (Translation.) 

i i2 

1*1 ATHBN 

01 the trace \\ itli the Peloponnesiant 

commanded l»v IVrid i>t th<' Euxine. in 

( 'ii \ I*, 
ii. order to awe and impress tin- \;iri tef and 

nationi along the adjacent coasts, whether 

Greek <>r Barbarian, with the display of 1 1 j • - 

Athenian power; and the city of Sii 

at tliat time dirided with contention- for and 

against it- 1\ rani Timesilaus, the republican party 

applied to the heed of the ( rreek dem 

aid. Lamachni, a warrior to whose gallant 

name, afterwards distinguished in tie 

ponnesian war, Aristophanes has accorded the 
equal honour of liis ridicule and his pra 
was entrusted with thirteen galleys, and a 
competent force for the expulsion of the tyrant 
and his adherents. The object effected, 
new government of Sinope rewarded six hun- 
dred Athenians with the freedom of the city and 
the estates of the defeated faction. 

While thus Athens fixed her footing on re- 
moter lands, gradually her grasp extended over 
the more near and necessary demesnes of Euboea, 
until the lands of more than two-thirds of that 
island were in the possession of Athenians.* At 
a later period, new opportunities gave rise to 
new cleruchiae.t 

* Andoc. Orat. de Pace. 

t These institutions differed, therefore, from colonies prin- 


XVIII. Besides these eleruelme, in the sen book 

cond year of the supreme admioistratioii of 

J l chap. 

Pericles, a colony, properly so called, vraa "• 

established in Western Italy — interesting alike 
from the great names of its early adventur- 
the beauty of its Site, and from the eiieimi- 
stance of its being, besides that at AmphipoHs, 

cipally in this : — the mother-country retained a firm hold over 
the deruchi — OOuld recti them or reclaim their i 
a penalty of revolt: — the cleruchi retained all the rights, and 
were suhjeet to most of the eonditions, of citi/.c n-» ' Li 

■rare given irithout the necessity of quitting Athens —depar- 
ture thence was voluntary, although it ■ dinarjchoicai 

But whether the cleruchi remained at home, or repaired to 
their settlement, they were equally attached to Athenian in- 
terests. From their small numher, and the enforced and unpo- 
pular nature of their tenure, their property, unlike that of ordi- 
nary colonists, depended on the power and safety of the parent 
state: the\ vera not 09 much transplanted shoots, as extend- 
ed branches of one tree, taking their very life from the same 
stem In modern time-. Ireland ■ parallel to the 

old clerucbise, — in the gift of lands to English adventurers — 
in the long and intimate connexion which subsisted between 
the manners, habits, and political feeling of the English 
settlers and the parent state — in the separation between the 
settlers and the natives j and in the temporary power and sub- 
sequent feebleness which resulted to the home government 
from the adoption of a system which garrisoned the land, 
but exasperated the inhabitants. 

Except, Ear instance, the Litui 

186 n 

hook the only pure and legitimate colony, 4 in contra 
distinction to the cleruchiae, founded l>\ Ath< 


ii. since her ancient migrations to Ionia ;m<l the 
Cyclades. Two centuriei 
mingled with Trosteniani had established, in the 
fertile garden of ■■< ia, the Stat 

Sybaris. Placed between tworiyers, theCrathis 
and the Sybaris — possessing extraordinary ad- 
vantages of site and climate, this celebn 
colony rose with unparalleled rapidity to emi- 
nence in war and luxury in peace. 

wuv it- population and resources, that it is mm 
by Diodorus to have bro u ght at one time three* 
hundred thousand men into the field — an army 
which doubled that which all Greece could as- 
semble at Plataea ! The exaggeration is evident ; 
but it still attests the belief of a populousness and 
power which must have rested upon no fabulous 
foundation. The state of Sybaris had pro-]. 
for a time by the adoption of a principle which is 
ever apt to force civilisation to premature develop- 
ment, and not unfrequently to end in the destruc- 
tion of national character and internal stability — 
viz. it opened its arms to strangers of every tribe 

* Nor were even these composed solely of Athenians, but 
of mixed'and various races. The colony to Amphipolis (b.c. 
465,) is the first recorded colony of the Athenians after the 
great Ionic migrations. 



and class. Thronged by mercantile adventurers, its u« 
trade, like that of Agrigentum, doubtless derived 
its sources from the oil and wine which it poured It 
into the harbours of Africa and (Jaul. As with 
individuals, so with states, wealth easily obtained 
is prodigally spent, and the effeminate and 
luptuous ostentation of Sybari- pasted into a 
proverb more enduring than her prosperity. 
Her greatness acquired by a tempered and active 
democracy received B mortal blow by the usurpa- 
tion of a tyrant named Telys, who, in 510 n.c, 
expelled five hundred of the principal citizen-. 
Croton received the exiles, a war broke out, 
and in the same year, or shortly afterwards, the 

Crotoniates, under Milo, defeated the Sybarit 
with prodigious •laughter, ami the city i 
abandoned to pillage, ami left desolate ami 
ruined. Those who survived fled to Laos and 
Scidrus. Fifty-eight years afterwards, aided by 
Some Thessalians, the exiled Sybarites again 
sought possession of their former settlement, but 
were speedily expelled by the Crotoniates. It 
was now that they applied to Sparta and Athens 
for assistance. The former state had neither 
population to spare, nor commerce to strengthen, 
nor ambition to gratify, and rejected the over- 
tures of the Sybarite envoys. But a different 
success awaited the exiles at Athens. Their 

ATI 1 1 | 

hook proposition, timed ia ■ period irheo h 

oeptable to the Athenian policy, wrai enforced l»y 


ii. ' Pericles. Adventurers from all pari 
B.CT4I1. hut invited etpecialJj from tin- Peloponneeae, 

swelled the miscellaneous hand : <-iiiiii<-ut anions 
the rest were Lysias, afterwards 10 celebrated Bl 
a rhetorician, 4 and Herodotus, the historian. 

As in the political cod' the religion! 

character of the people inade a pervading principle, 
soincolonisation the Deity of the parent itateti 
planted His worship with lli> rotariea, and the 
relation between the new and the old country was 
expressed and perpetuated by the touching symbol 
of taking fire from the Prytaneum of tin; native 
B.C. 443. c ity. A renowned diviner, named Lampon/I 
whose sacred pretensions did not preserve him 
from the ridicule of the comic poets, | accom- 
panied the emigrants, and an oracle diet 
the site of the new colony near the ancient 
city, and by the Fountain of Thurium. The 
Sybarites, with the common vanity of men 
whose ancestors have been greater than them- 

* In the year in which the colony of Thurium or Thurii 
was founded, the age of Lysias was fifteen, that of Herodotus 

t Plut. in vit. Per. Schol. Aristoph. Av. 521. 

+ Viz. Callias, Lysippus, and Cratinus — See Athenaeus, 
lib. viii. p. 344. The worthy man seems to have had the 
amiable infirmities of a bon vivunt. 



I ,1 \r 

selves, increased their pretensions in proportioii book 

as they lost their power ; they affected su- 
periority over their companions, by whose n 

swords alone they again existed as a people; 
claimed the exclusive monopoly of the principal 
offices of government, and the first choice of 
lands ; and were finally cutoff by the very allies 
whose aid they had sought, and whose resentment 
they provoked. New adventurers from Greece 
replaced the Sybarites, and the colonists of 
Thurium, divided into ten tribes, — (four, the re- 
presentatives of the united Ionians, Boboaans, 
Islanders, and Athenians ; three, of the Pelo" 
ponnesians ; and three, of the settlers from 
Northern Greece,) — retained peaceable posses- 
sion of their delightful t er r itory , and harmonii 
their motley numbers by the adoption of the en- 
lightened laws and tranquil institutions of Cha- 

rondas. — Such was the home of Herodotus, the 


'!!»<> mii 


imnbtMH <>r mii: \inr.M\s 01 mii. TIME OP 


book L In proportion ;is it had become matter of 
honourable pride and lucrative advantage to be 
in. a citizen of Athens, it was natural that the I 

defining and limiting the freedom of the citv 
should increase in strictness. Even before the 
time of Themistocles, those only were considered 
legitimate,* who, on either side, derived parent- 
age from Athenian citizens. But though illegi- 
timate, they were not therefore deprived of the 
rights of citizenship ; nor had the stain upon hi* 
birth been a serious obstacle to the career of 
Themistocles himself. Under Pericles, the law 
became more severe, and a decree was passed 
(apparently in the earlier period of his rising 

* Plut. in vit. Them. 

ITS RISK AM) 1 ALL. 491 

power,) which excluded from the freedom of M 
the city those whose parent- were not hoth 
Athenian. In the very year in which he at- in. 
tained tin- supreme administration of atlair-. 
occasion for enforcing the law occurred 
I'-aninietichus, the pretender to tin- K-vptian 
throne, sent a present of corn to the Athenian 
people ; the claimant- for a -hare in the gift un- 
derwent the ordeal of -crntin their tit 
lo citizenship, and no less than live thousand 
persona were convicted of having fraudulently 
foisted themselves into rights which wen- now 
tantamount to property ; they were disfran- 
chised;* and the whole list of the free titi/. 

* Historians, following the received tact in Plutarch, ha 
retailed the incredible story, thai the rejected claims 

sold lor slaves; but when we consider the extraordinary agi- 
tation it must have caused to carry inch a seatei 
many persons, amounting to a fourth part of the tree popula- 
tion—when we remember the nnmnroni cp p, nmwnsi extend- 
ing throughout at least tour times their own number, which 
five thousand persons living long undisturbed ami unsuspected 
;i> tree citizens must have formed, it is impossible to con- 
ceive that such rigour could even have been attempted, 
without creating revolution, sedition, or formidable resistance. 
Vet this measure, most important if attended with such re- 
sults — most miraculous if not — is passed over in total silence 
In Thucydidesj and by every other competent authority 
A luminous emendation by Mr. Clinton (Fast Hell. vol. ii. 
second edition, pp.59 and 390. note p.) restores the propel 
meaning. Instead of eirpci6t)(r«i, he propose! <<t;/A»'0»/' T( " — 

492 \ i in m 

hook \\;i- reduced lo little mora than fo ur teen nV 

in." Jl. While under thi> brilliant and ener 

admiiii-fratioii, Athens wai daily more and □ 
concentrating on benelfthe reluctant admiration, 
and the growing fears of Greece, her policy 
wards her dcjiriidtiit allies involved her in ■ 
war which u 1 1 i 1 1 1 ; 1 1 • 1 \ gave, if not ;i legal, ;it 
least an acknowledged, title fce the preteneioni 
she assumed. Hostilitief between the new popu- 
lation of Miletui and the oligarchic government 
of Samos had been far some time carried on ; the 

object of contention was the city of Priene — 

united, app a re n tly, with rival claims upon Anssa, 
a town on tlie coast, opposite Samoa. The 

Milesians, unsuccessful in the war, applied to 
Athens for assistance. As the Samians were 
among the dependent allies, Pericles, in the 

the authorities from Lysias, quoted by Mr. Clinton ( |>. 
seem to decide the matter. " These five thousand disfran- 
chised citizens, in B c. 544, partly supplied the colony to 
Thurium in the following year, and partly contributed to 
augment the number of the Metceci." 

* Fourteen thousand two hundred and forty, according 
to Philochorus. By the term ■ free citizens' is to be under- 
stood those male Athenians above twenty — that is, those en- 
titled to vote in the public assembly. According to .Mr. Clin- 
ton's computation the women and children being added, the 
fourteen thousand two hundred and forty will amount to 
about fifty-eight thousand six hundred and forty, M the 
total of the free population. 


name of the Athenian people, ordered them to hook 
refer to Athens the decision of the dispute : on 
their refusal, an expedition of fort\ was in. 

conducted against them by Pericles in person. 
A -t ill more plausible colour than that of tin- 
right of dictation was given to this interference; 
for the prayer of the Afilesiani was backed ami 
sanctiom d by many of the Sasaians themseh 
oppressed by the oligarchic g o ver n ment which 
presided over them. A ridiculous assertion was 
made by the libellers of the comic drama, and 
the enemies of Pericles, that the n\ ar was under- 
taken at the instigation of Aspasia, with whom 
that minister had formed the i ■oniuwion ; 

but the expedition \\a> the accessary and uii- 
avoidahle result of the twofold policy by which 

the Athenian government invariably directed it- 
actions ; 1st, to enforce the right of ascendencv 

over its allies ; Sndly, to replace oligarchic by 

democratic institutions. Nor, on this occasion, 
could Athens have remained neutral or supine, 
without materially weakening her hold upon all 
the states she aspired at once to democratise and 
to govern. 

III. Hie fleet arrived at Samos— the oligarchic 
government was deposed — one hundred hostages 
(fifty men — fifty boys) from its partisans were 
taken and placed at Lemnos, and a garrison was 


ijook Left to secure tin- ae* oomtitutiun <4' the island. 

Some of tin- <1 faction tm»k n i tin- 
< ii \p. 


siatic contim m intrigue with 

I*. graian Pissuthnes, satrap of Sardi* ; and 

lia\ ing, by continued with their 

friend* at Sajpot, secured connivaa< their 

nipt, thr\ landed l»\ night « ith i 

hired fo d hundred loldiert, and 

ded in naeterio Uhenian garrison, and 

securing the greater pan of the chiefs of the 
new administration ; while, bj tad 

urll-contrivcd plot, they Regained their boe- 
- left at Lemnos. They then openly pvsv 
(lainicd their independei ed the oli- 

garchy — and as a formal proof of defiant 
rendered to Pissuthnes the Athenians tin \ had 
captured. Byzantium hastened to join the re- 
volt. Their alliance with Pissuthnes procured the 
Samians the promised aid of a Phoenician fleet — 
and they now deemed themselves sufficiently sti 
to renew their hostilities with Miletus. Their 
plans were well laid, and their boldness made a 
considerable impression on the states hostile 
Athens. Among the Peloponnesian allies, it 
was debated whether or not, despite the treaty, 
the Samians should be assisted : opinions wen- 
divided, but Corinth,* perhaps, turned the scale, 

* Thucyd. i. c. 40. 


I)\ insisting on tin- tight of every tote to deal lopi 
with its dependent-. Corinth had, herself, ( , m , 
colonies over which she desired to preserve J^ 
a dictatorial sway ; and she was disposed 
to regard the Sainian revolution 1 be gal- 

lantry of freemen than the enterprise of rebels. 
it was fortunate, too, perhaps, for Athens, that 
the Samian insurgents had >ought their ally in 
thePershin satrap; nor could the Petoponnenan 
states at that time ha\ ronsly assisted the 

iau against the Athenian anas. Bat short 
time lor deliberation was left by a gbvarnnu 

which procured for the Athenians the char.e 
to be not more quick to contrive than to execute 
— to be the only people \n1io could simulta- 
neously project and acquire— ami who even con- 
sidered a festival hut as a day on which sonic 
necessary business could be accomplished.* 
With a fleet of sixty sail, Pericles made for 
Samos ; some of the vessels mora -tationed on 
the Carian coast to watch the movements of the 
anticipated Phoenician reinforcement ; others 
were despatched to collect aid from Chios and 
Lesbos. Meanwhile, though thus reduced to 
forty-four sail, Pericles, near a small island 
called Tragia, engaged the Samian fleet re- 
turning from Miletus, consisting of seventy 
* See the Speech of the Corinthians. — Thucyd. lih. i. 70. 


A 1 II 

booi vessels, and gained ■ victory. Then, rein. 

„ forced by forty galleyi from Athens, and 

III* twenty-five from Lesbos and Chios, he landed 
on tho Maud, defeated the Samiaiu in a pitched 
battle, drove them into their city, invested it 
with a triple Line of ramparts, and simul- 
taneously blockaded the city by tea* The bai 
gad prere not, however, to., discouraged to 
sally out ; and under Melissns, who was at ones 
a philosopher and a hero, they eveo obtained 
tdvantage in a sea-fight. But these efforts • 
sufficiently unimportant to permit Pencil 
draw off sixty of his vessel-, and steet along the 
Carian coast to meet the expected Meet of the 
Phoenicians. The besieged did not suffer the 
opportunity thus afforded them to escape — they 
surprised the naval blockading force, destroyed 
the guard-ships, and joining battle with the 
of the fleet, obtained a decisive victory, which 
B.C. 440. for fourteen days left them the mastery of the 
open sea, and enabled them to introduce sup- 

IV. While lying in wait for the Phoenician 
squadron, which did not, however,- make its ap- 
pearance, tidings of the Samian success were 
brought to Pericles. He hastened back and re- 
newed the blockade — fresh forces were sent to 
his aid — from Athens, forty-eight ships, under 


three generals, Thucydides,* Agnon, an<l Phor- hook 
followed by twenty more under Tle|»< 


* Who was this Thucydides ? The rival of Peru 
had been exiled less than ten years before;' and it is 
difficult to suppose that he could have been recalled be- 
fore the expiration of the sentence, and appointed to com- 
mand, at the very period when the power and influence of 
Pericles wort- at their height. Thucydides, the historian, 
about thirty •one, an age at which BO high a command 

would scarcely, at that period, have been bestowed upon any ci- 
tizen, even in Athens, where men mixed in public affairs 
earlier than in other Hellenic states;* besides, had Thucy- 
dides been present, would he have given us no more ample 
details of an event so important? There were several who 
bore this name. The scholiast on Aristophanes ( Aeharn 
v. 703) says there were four, whom he distinguishes thus — 
I st, the historian; 2nd, the (iaigettian; 3rd, the Thessa- 
lian ; 4th, the son of" Melesias. The scholiast on the Vespae, 
(v. 991,) enumerate me, and calls them all Athenians- 

The son of Melesias is usually supposed the opponent of Pe- 
rieles — he is so called by Androtion. Theopompus, how- 
ever, says that it was the son of Pantanus. Marcellinu 
vit. Thucyd. p. xi.) speaks of many of the name, and also 
is four for special notice. 1st, the historian; 2nd, the 
son of Melesias ; 3rd, a Pharsalian ; 4th, a poet of the ward 
of Acherdus, mentioned by Androtion, and called the son of 


1 In fact, about four years ago; viz. B.C. 444. 

fhucydides himself (lib. v. 43 ) speaks of Alcibiades as a 
mere youth, (at least, one who would have been so consi- 
dered in any other state,) at a time when he could not have 
been much less, and was probably rather more, than thirty. 

198 \ I : • 

imiiK leiii us and Anticles, while Chios and ! 

supplied :ui additional squadron of thirty. Still 

en \ r. 

in the besieged were not disheartened ; they fea- 
tured another engagement, which was bul u 
ineffectual struggle, and then, shut up within 

their cit\ , Itood B 4 nine months. 

\\ ith all the small Greek states, it had 
been t 1m- policy of necessity, to shun even victo- 
ries attended with gfl ThlB J»olir\ 

refined by Pericles into a scientific Bystem. In 
the present instance, he avoided all assaults 

which might weaken his forces, and preferred 
the loss of time to the loss of lite. The- tedioui 
leno-th of the blockade occasioned sonic mur- 
murs amongst the lively and impatient forces be 

commanded; but he i- said to have diverted 
the time by the holiday devices, which in the 
Middle Ages often so graced and softened the 
rugged aspect of war. The army was divided 
into eight parts, and by lot it was decided which 

Ariston. Two of this name, the historian and the son of 
Melesias, are well-known to us ; but for the reasons I have 
mentioned, it is more probable that one of the others was 
general in the Samian war. A third Thucydides (the Thes- 
salian, or Pharsalian) is mentioned by the historian himself, 
(viii. 92.) 1 take the Gargettian (perhaps the son of Pan- 
tanus named by Theopompus) to have been the commander 
in the expedition. 



one of the eight divisions should, for the time, BOOK 
encounter the fatigues of actual service ; the re- 


maining seven passed the day in sport! and in. ' 
feasting.* A concourse of women appear to 
have found their way to the encampment, (and a 
Samian writer ascrihes to their piety or their 
gratitude, the subsequent erection of a temple 
to Venus. The siege, too, gave occasion to 
Pericles to make experiment of military engines, 
which, if invented before, probably now re- 
ceived mechanical improvement. Although, in 
the earlier contest, mutual animosities had been 
so keen that the prisoners on either side had 
been contumeliously branded, [ it was, perhaps, 

the festive and easy manner in which the 
was afterwards carried on, that, mitigating the 
bitterness of prolonged hostiliti red to pro- 

cure, at last, for the Samians articles of capitu- 
lation more than usually mild. They embraced 
conditions of demolishing their fortification-, 
delivering up their ships, and paying by instal 

• Pint, in vit. Per. 

I Alexis ap. Ath. lib. xiii. 

J At this period, the Athenian! made war with ■ forbear- 
ance m>t common in later ages. When TimotheiM be- 
sieged Samoa he maintained hia armament solely on the 

hostile country, while a liege of nine months cost Athens 
so considerable i sum. 

K K 2 

500 \ rn ins: 

BOOK (henta a portion towards thr eotl of tin- -urge.* 

Byzantium, which, commanding the enti 
in. the Buxine, was a moat important poaimrirrn to 

the Athenians, -" whether lor ambition or for com? 
iiirrce, at tie nrne time accepted, withonl 
sistance, the terms held out to it, and 
once more subject to tin- Athenian empire. 

V. On his return, Pericles was received with 
an enthusiasm which attested tie- sense enter- 
tained of the value of his conquest. He pro- 

* IMut. in \ it. P. 

Hm contribution levied on the Samians was two hun- 
dred talents, proportioned, according to Diodorus, to the full 
cost of* the expedition. But as Boeckh (Pol. Econ. of 
Athens, vol. i. p. 386, trans.) well observes, " This was a 
very lenient reckoning ; a nine months' siege by land and 
sea, in which one hundred and ninety-nine triremes' were em- 
ployed, or, at any rate, a large part of this number, for a 
considerable time, must evidently have caused a greater ex- 
pense, and the statement, therefore, of Isocrates and Nepos> 
that twelve hundred talents were expended on it, appears 
to be by no means exaggerated." 

f It was on Byzantium that they depended for the corn- 
they imported from the shores of the Euxine. 

Boeckh states the number of triremes at one hundred 
and ninety-nine, but, in fact, there were two hundred and fif- 
teen vessels employed, since we ought not to omit the six- 
teen stationed on the Carian coast, or despatched to Lesbos 
and Chios for supplies. 



nounced upon those who had fallen in the war I 
funeral oration.* When he descended from the ' 

C 1 1 A 1 . 

rostrum, the women crowded round and show ered in. 
fillets and chaplets on the eloquent victor. 
Elpinice, the sister of Cimon, alone ■bated not 
the genera] enthusiasm. " Are these action 
ihe Bald to Pericles, " worthy of chaplets and 
garlands? — actions purchased by to of 

many gallant eitixens— not awn egainst the 
Phoenician and the Mode, like those of Cimon, 
bnt by the ruin of a city united with ooisalvcf in 
amity and origin." The ready minister re- 
plied to the Invective of Elpinice by a line from 
Archilochns, which, in alluding to the age and 
coquetry of the lady, probably anawanad the 
oratorical purpose of securing the laugh on bil 
own Bid 

* The proctia of funeral orations was probably of very 
ancient origin anion.: the On a ts : but the km which or- 
dained them at Athens is nmtttlA by the Scholiast on Thu- 

cydides, ib - "• 35 ') to Solon : " ,lile DitKloru »- on the other 
hand, informs us it was not passed till after the hatth 
PUtMU It iiypMn most probable that it was an usage of 
the Heroic times, which became obsolete while the little 
feuds among the (J reek states remained trivial and unim- 
portant; bat after the Persian invasion, it was solemnly re- 
vived, from the magnitude of the war< which Greece had 
undergone, and the dignity and holiness of the cause in 
which the defenders of ihtir country had fallen. 

-|- Ovk av /.ivpoiTt ypavK iovq »j\ei'peo. 

This seems the only natural interpretation of the line, in 

vi 111 m 

pool \\ hile ihea onfirmed 1 1 j • - autlu 

of Athens and the Athenian government, a 


in. Power had grown up within the city th 

sumed a right, the grave assertion of which 
without the walls \s < > u 1 < 1 have been deeply fell 
and bitterly re— ted — a Power thai sate in 
severe and derisive judgment upon Athens her- 
sclf, berlawi| her liberties, her migh 
li.r learned ■tstesaien ) bar poets, her Mges, 
Ikt arrogant demo cr a cy a Power that 
come down to foreign nations and distant i 
as armed w tth irresistible weapon n bich now i- 
per stilled to u i ^ «* testimony, not only against in- 
dividuals, but nations themselves, but which, in 
that time, was not more effective in p I re- 

sults than at this day a caricature in St. Jam* 
street, or a squib in a weekly n< r — a 

Power which exposed to relentless ridicule, before 
the most susceptible and numerous tribunal, the 
loftiest names in rank, in wisdom, and in genius 

which, from not having the context, ire lost- whatever wit 
the sentence may have possessed — and witty we must suppose 
it was, since Plutarch evidently thinks it a capital joke. In 
corroboration of this interpretation of an allusion which has 
a little perplexed the commentators, we may observe, that 
ten years before, Pericles had judged a sarcasm upon the age 
of Elpinice the best way to silence her importunities. The 
anecdote is twice told by Plutarch, in vit. Cim. c. 14, and 
in vit. Per. c. 10. 

ITS RISK AM) PA1 I , 503 

and which could nut have deprived a beggar of book 
his obol, or a scavenger of his office :— the 


VJ. We 1. a that in the early villa 

festivals, out of which grew tin- tragedt of Phry- 
nichus and /Bschylus, there were, besides the 
Dithyramb and the Satyrs, the Phallic proa 
sions, which diversified the ceremony 1>\ the 
lowest jests mingled with the wildest satire* As 
her tragedy had its origin in the Dithyramb 
her satyric after-piece had it> origin in the satj ric 
buffooneries— so out of the Phallic \ 
rose tin- Comedy of Greece.* Snsarion is 
serted by some to ha. d a Megarian bj 

origin ; and while tin' democracy of Megara « 
mi in force, hi' appears to have roughly shaped 
the disorderly merriment of the p r o ce s si on in! 
ruth' mice, interspersed with the old choral 
songs. The close connexion between Megara 

and Athens soon served to communicate to the 
latter the improvements of Susarion ; and th 
improvements obtained for the Megarian the 

title of inventor of comedy, with about the same 
justice as a similar degree of art conferred upon 
the later Thespis the distinction of the origin of 
tragedy. The study of Homer's epics had sug- 
gested its true province to tragedy ; the stud) "i 

\ i a<>t. Poet. i\. 

•"><>! Aim 

book the Margites, attributed also to II 

have defined and enlarged the domain of corned > . 

(ii \i\ 

ii!. Elev< Phrynichus ap| ami 

jii.-t previom to the first lus, Epicharmas, whoappean to bar* 

of ( 'os, # produced at Si ra liesl 

nunetrical and systematic form of comic dia- 
logue and fable. All Bccounti prove him to 

have been a man of extraordinary 

and of very thoughtful am! 

mind. IVrhaps the loss of hi- work- is not the 

least to be lamented of those priceless ti 

which time has destroyed. So uncertain, after 
all, is the gre:it tribunal of posterity, which is 
often as little to he relied upon as the caprice of 
the passing day ! We have the worthless Electors 
of Euripides — we have lost all, save the titles and 
a few sententious fragments, of thirty-five come- 
dies of Epicharmus ! Yet if Horace inform as 
rightly, that the poet of Syracuse was the model 
of Plautus. perhaps in the Amphitryon we can 
trace the vein and genius of the father of true 
comedy ; and the thoughts and the plot of the 

* M As he was removed from Cos in infancy, the name of 
his adopted country prevailed over that of the country of his 
birth, and Epicharmus is called of Syracuse, though horn at 
Cos, as Apollonius is called the Khodian, though born at 
Alexandria." — Fast. Hell. vol. ii. introduction. 


lost Epicharmus may still exist, mutilated and book 
disguised, in the humours of the greateW comic 
poet* of modern Europe. *"• 

\ 11. It was chiefly from the rich stove* pf my- 
thology that Bpicharmot drew bis fables ; but 
what was sublimity with the tragic DO( 
burlesque with the comic. lie parodied the 
august personages and wneerable adventurei 

the gods of tbi iv Pantheon. By a >in- 

gular coincidence, like his eontemporai 
chylus,| he *as a Pythagorean, and it is 
wonderful to observe how rapidly and boa 
powerfully the influence of the mysterious S 

inian operated on the in«»-t original intelleets of 
the age. The familiar nature of the Hellenic 
religion sanctioned, even in the onphilosophical 
age of Homer, a treatment of celestial | 
that to our modern notions would, at first glance, 

evince a disrespe c t for the religion itself. But 
wherever homage to • dead men" he admitted, 
we may, even in our own times, tind that the 

* Molieiv 

f Laertius viii. For it is evident that Epieharmus, the 
philosopher, w as no other than Epieharnuis, the philosophi- 
eal poet— the delight of I'lato, who was himself half a Pytha- 
gorean. — Set- Bentle\, Din. Phal. p. 201; Laertius, viii. 
78; Fynes Clinton, Fast. Hell. vol. ii., introduction, p. 

(note //. ) 


( liiniinli'S 

li.V. 487. 

hook most jocular legends are Attached to canto held 

in the meet reverential awe. Ami he who I 
in. listened to :ni Irish or in [talian Catholics' 
familiar stories of lome favourite mint, may 

form an adequate notion of the manner in which 

■ pious Greek could jesl npon Bacchoj to-dai 
and sacrifice to Bacchus to-mono* . With his mi 
thological travesties the Pytl a mingled, 

apparently, many earnest maxims of morality,* 

ami {hough not free, in the judgment of Aris- 
totle, from a vice of style usually common 

only to ages tin- most refined;) b \«i 

proverbial, even in the most polished period of 

Grecian letters, for the graces of his diction and 
the happy choice of his expn Beiona. 

Phorinis, a contemporary of Epicharmus, 
flourished also at Syracuse, and though some- 
times classed with Epicharmus, and selecting 
his materials from the same source, his claim- to 
reputation are immeasurably more equivocal. 
Dinolochus continued the Sicilian school, and 
was a contemporary of the first Athenian comic 

VIII. Hence it will be seen that the origin 

* A few of his plays were apparently not mythological, 
but they were only exceptions from the general rule, and 
might have been written after the less refining coined:.. 
Magnet at Athens. 

■f A love of false antithesis. 


of comedy does not rest vvitli the Athenians; hook 
that Megara, if the birth-place of Susarion, C||A _ 
may fairly claim whatever merit belongs to the ^ 
first rude improvement, and thai ii 

entitled to the higher distinction of raising hu- 
mour into art. So far is comedy the oflsprii 
ol' the Dorians — not the Dorians of a sullen 
oligarchy, with whom to vary an air of mm 
was ■ crime— not the Dorians of Lacedeemoo — 
but of Megara and Syracuse — of an energetic, 
though irregular democracy — of a splendid, 
though illegitimate monarchy.* 

But the comedy of Epicharmus was not alt 
gether the old comedy of Athens. Th 
as bequeathed to us by Aristophanes, h 
tures which bear little family resemblance to the 
philosophical parodies of the Pythagorean poet 
It does not confine itself to mythological iubj( 
— it avoids the sententious style — it does not 
preach, but ridicule, philosophy — it plunges 
amidst the great practical business of men — it 
breathes of the Agora and the Pineus — it is not 
a laughing sage, but a bold, boisterous, gigantic, 
demagogue, ever in the thickest mob of human 

* In Syracuse, however, the republic existed when Epi 
charmua first exhibited his comedies. His genius was there- 
fore formed by a republic, though afterwards fostered by a 

\ thi 

< ii \i\ 

\uH>k interests, and wielding all tin* various humoun 
of a democracy with a brilliant audaci 

that n-cklcss ea>c whieh is the proof of i 
Dishing pow< 

\ I ( 'hiouiile*. WM Um lir-t Athenian comic 

miter. Wt find him before the public fthn 
r the battle el Marathon, when the final 
of Hippiaa confirmed the stability of 

jtnhlie ; and when the Improvemei 

in to communicate new attri 

lions to the comii I w riter of 

al w it, ami long popular, closely followed, and 

the titles of some of the plays of these wrn 
confirm the hclicf that Attic comedy, froin its com- 
mencement, took other ground than that occupied 
by the mythological burlesques of Bpicharmna, 
So great was the impetus given to the new art, 
that a crowd of writers followed simultaneously, 
whose very names it is wearisome to mention. 
Of these the most eminent were Cratinus and 
The earliest recorded play of Cratinus, 
he must have exhibited many he- 
appeared the year prior to the death of 

I'll- Archi- Crates. 

lochi of 

Cratinus tllOUgll 

fore * 

B.C. 448. 

* For Crates acted in the plays of Cratinus before he turned 
author. (See next p.) Now the first play of Crates dates two 
years before the first recorded play (the Archilochi) of Cratinus 
consequently Cratinus must have been celebrated long pre- 
vious to the exhibition of the Archilochi — indeed, his earlier 


CimOD. Plutarch quotes some lines from this , J4I1 
author, which allude to the liberality of 
Cimon with something of that patron-loving m. ' 
spirit which was rather the characteristic of a 
Roman than an Athenian poet Though he 
himself, despite hi-< age, was proverbially of ao 
\n\ abstemious or decorous habits, Cratinus 
was unsparing in his attacks upon others, and 
wherever he found ox suspected nee, he saw ■ 
subject worthy of his genius. Hr was admired 
to late posterity, and hy Roman critics, for the 

grace, and even for the grandeur of his hardy 

verse*, and Quinctilian oonples him with Eu- 

polis and Aristophanes as models for the forma- 
tion of orators. Crates appeared two years 
before the first recorded play of Cratinus. He i"b.u 

had previously been an actor, and performed 
the principal characters in the plays of< ratinus. 
Aristophanes bestows on him the rare honour of 
his praise, while he sarcastically reminds the 
Athenian audience of the ill reception thai 
ingenious a poet often received at their hands. 
Yet, despite the excellence of the earlier comic 
writers, they had hitherto at Athens very spa- 
ringly adopted the artistical graces of Epichar- 

play* appear, according to Aristophanes, to have been the 
most suivtssr'ul, until the old gentleman, by a last vigorous 
effort, beat the favourite play of Aristophanes himself. 




book nius. Crates, who did Dot write hefore the five 

\« art 1 trace with Sparta, is said : 
in. * only to have been the fiiel who abandoned the 
Lanxbic form of comedy, bat the first Athenian 
who invent,. I systematic fable or plot — j 
argument to show bow little the Athenian bor- 
rowed from the Sicilian comedy, since, if the 
lent had been it- source of inspiration, tin- in- 
rented of Bpicharmus — (by half ;i i 

tury the predecessor of I Would natu- 

rally have been the moat striking improvement 

to be imitated. The Athenian comedy did 

not receive the same distinctions confei 
upon tragedy. So obscure was i it- 

later eminence, that even Aristotle could not 
determine when, or by whom, the various pro- 
gressive improvements were made : and, 
garded with jealous or indifferent eyes by the 
magistrature as an exhibition given by private 
competitors, nor calling for the protection of the 
state which it often defied, it was long before it- 
chorus was defrayed at the public cost. 

Under Cratinus and Crates,* however, in the 
year of the Samian war, the comic drama es- 

* That the magistrature did not at first authorise comedy 
seems a proof that it was not at the commencement considered, 
like tragedy — of a religious character. And, indeed; though 
modern critics constantly urge upon us its connexion with 


sinned a character, either bo personally §cnr« boor 

rilous, or so politically dangerous, that ■ decree ( 

was passed interdicting its exhibition*. The ill. 

law was repealed three years afterwards.* \ i 

* ill 

ing its temporary enforcement, and the date in b.c mo. 

which it was passed, it appears highly prolmhle J^JJJ re ' 

that the critical events of the Sainian expedition " ( 

may have been the cause of the decree. At 
such a time the opposition of the comic writ 
might have been considered dangerous. With 
the increased stability of the state the law i 

perhaps, deemed no longer QeCCOBaTT. And 

from the recommencement of the comic drama a e 

may brobabry date both the improvements of 
Crates, and the special protection of tin 

religion, I doubt whether at any time the populace thought 
mora of its holier attribute! anil associations than the N 
politans of to-day are impressed with the sanctity of the 
carnival when they are throwing sugar-plums at each 

* In the interval, however, the poets seem to have sought 
to elude the law, since the names of two plays (the Zurvpoi 
and the KoXewpoput) are recorded dining this period— plf 
which probably approached comedy without answering to its 
legal definition. It might be that the difficulty rigidly to 
enforce the law against the spirit of the times and the incli- 
nation of the people was one of the causes that led to the 
repeal of the prohibition. 

5 12 ATI 1 1 I 

o* for when, for the first time, ( omedy was I 

niallv authorised l>\ the lav., it was natural tl 

in the la* should i e the privilcu » ••< it claimed 

in common with it- Tragedy. There 

is do authority for supposing that Peri 

whOM calm temper and long novitiate in the 

itormj career of public life, seem to I 
rendered him callous to public abui the 

author of this do It i- bighl} probable 

indeed that he w;i uos* 

when it was passed ; but he was ti. t of 

8ueli virulent attacks l>\ the comic poetl that 
might consider them actuated by some personal 
feeling of revenge and spleen, were it not evident 
that Cratinus at least (and probably Crates, hfs 
disciple,) was attached to the memory of ( imon, 
and could not fail to be hostile to the principles 
and government of Cimon's successor. So far 
at this period had Comedy advanced ; but, in 
the background, obscure and undreamed of, 
one, yet in childhood, destined to raise the Comic 
to the rank of the Tragic Muse ; — one who, per- 
haps, from his earliest youth, was incited by the 
noisy fame of his predecessors, and the desire 
of that glorious, but often perverted power, so 
palpable and so exultant, which rides the stormy 

* Since that siege lasted nine months of the year in 
which the decree was made. 


waves of popular applause.* About thirteen hook 
years after the brief prohibition of comedy ap- 
peared that wonderful genius, the elements and m. 
attributes of whose works it will be a j . if 

arduous task, in due season, to analyse and de- 
fine ; — matchless alike in delicacy and strength, 
in powers the most gigantic, in purpose the m 
daring — with the invention of Shakspeare — 
the playfulness of Rabelais — the malignity of 
Swift, — need I add the name of Aristophanes? 
XI. But while Comedy had thus progressed 
to its first invidious dignity, that of proscription, 
far different was the reward that awaited the 

* Aristophanes thus vigorously de»crihes the applauses 
that attended the earlier productions of (.'ratio us. 1 quote 
from the masterly translation of Mr. Mitchell. 

" Who C." rat in us may forget, or the storm of whim and wit, 
Which shook theatres under his guiding ; 
When Panegyric's song poured her flood of praise along, 
Who but he on the top wave was riding?" 

" His step was as the tread of a flood that leaves its bed, 
And his march it was rude desolation,'' &C 

Mitchell's Aristoph. The Knights, p. 204. 

The man who wrote thus must have felt betimes — when, as 
a boy, he first heard the roar of the audience -what it is to 
rule the humours of eighteen thousand spectators ! 

514 vl ' 

book pWienl representative and master <>f the ti 
v * school. In tin- year that, the muse of Cratmui 
11I# * wassih'iicrti. Bophodai mm appointed one of tbi 
colleague! with Periclei in the Stmian war. 





I. It was in the very nature of the Athenian ijook 
drama, that, when once established, it should 

1111 n CHAP. 

concentrate and absorb almost every variety <>t i\. 
the poetical genius. The old lyrical poetry, 
never much cultivated in Athens, ceased in a 
great measure when tragedy arose, or rather, 
tragedy was the complete developement, the n< 
and perfected consummation, of the Dithyrambic 
ode. Lyrical poetry transmigrated into the 
choral song-, as the epic merged into the dia- 
logue and plot, of the Drama. Thus, when we 
speak of Athenian poetry, we speak of Dramatic 
poetry — they were one and the same. As Hel- 
vetins has so luminously shown,* genius ever 
turns towards that quarter in which fame shines 
brightest, and hence, in every age, there will be 
mpathetic connexion between the taste of 
the public and the direction of talent — 

* Do l'Esprit, passim. 

L L 2 






Now in Athens, where audiena nu- 

merous, and readen f<-\\, — every man who i 
within himselfthe inspiration of the poet, \s * » 1 1 1 < I 
necessarily desire to see hi- poetry put into 

action — assisted with all the pomp of sp 
and musio, hallowed by the solemnity of a 
ligious festival, Slid breathed, by srtisti elabor 
rately trained to heighten the eloquence of won 
Into tin- reverent ear of assembled Greece. 

Hence the multitude of dramatic poets, bence 
the mighty fertility of each ; — hence the life and 
activity of this— the comparative torpor and bar- 
renness of every other — species of j 
add to the pre-eminence of the art, the applau 
of the many were sanctioned by the critical 
canons of the few. The drama was not only 
the most alluring form which the divine Spi- 
rit could assume — but it was also deemed the 
loftiest and the purest ; and when Aristotle 
ranked* the tragic higher than even the epic 
Muse, he probably did but explain the rea- 
for a preference which the generality of critics 
were disposed to accord to her.f 

* De Poet. c. 26. 

+ The oracle that awarded to Socrates the superlative 
degree of wisdom, gave to Sophocles the positive, and to 
Euripides the comparative, degree. 



11. The career of the most majestic of the book 

Greek poets — was eminently felicitous. Hi- 

birth was noble, his fortune affluent; his 11a- IV. 

tural gifts were the rarest which nature b 

stows on man, genius and beauty. All t 

care which the age permitted was lavished 

on his education. For his feet even the ordi- 
nary obstacles in the path of distinction w 
smoothed away. He entered life under auspi 
the most propitious and poetical. At the B 
of sixteen, he headed the youths who performed 
the triumphant paean round the trophy of 8 
[amis. At twenty-five, when the bones of The- 
seus were borne back to Athens, in the galley of 
the victorious Cinion, he exhibited his firtl 
play, and won the prize from JEschyltM. That 
haughty genius, whether indignant at the suc- 
of a younger rival, or at a trial for impiety 
before the Areopagus, to which, (though ac- 
quitted,) he was subjected, or at the rapid 
cendency of a popular party, that he seems to 
have scorned with the disdain at once of an 
Eupatrid and a Pythagorean, soon after retired 
from Athens to the Syracusan court ; and though 

So^»t)c So^oicX*/!/ oixfHttrepoi; i 7c" 

'A>-?pwj> £e nuvTwv 2wvpar>yv ao<j>u)7aru<;. 

Sophocles is wise, — Euripides wiser, —but wisest of all men 
is Soerati 


book he thenci use <>t his dramas t«» i In- Athe- 

nian stage, 4 tin- absent veteran could not but 

i\ . tn than tin- \ oung aspirant, 

whose artful and poll more in 

harmony with tin- reigning taste than tin- vast but 
rii'. indeurof yEschylus, who, perhaps! 

tin- impossibility tangibly and visibly t«> I 
forth hii shadowy Titans ami ol iblimity 

of design, does appear to have obtain 

popularity on the >t;««_:t' equal to his celebrity as 
a poet. | For three-and-eixty years did Sopho- 
cles continue to < whilst ; tweiu be ob- 
tainetl the iir-t j >ri /.<*, and he i- said I 

Jiave been degraded t<> the third. The ordinary 

persecutions of envy itself seem to hav< 

this fortunate poet. Although his moral i 

racter was far from pure ;J and even in i 

old age he sought after the pleasures of his 

* The Oresteia. 

f For out of seventy plays by vEschylus only thirteen 
were successful ; and the very law passed in honour of his 
memory, that a chorus should be granted to any poet who 
chose to re-exhibit his dramas, seems to indicate that a little 
encouragement of such exhibition Mas requisite. This is 
still more evident if we believe with Quinctilian, that the 
poets who exhibited, were permitted to correct and polish up 
the dramas to meet the modern taste, and play the Cibber 
to the Athenian Shakspeare. 

X Athenaeus, lib. xiii. pp.603, 604. 


youth,* yet his excesses apparently met with a BO 


remarkable indulgence from his conteniporari 

& ' . CRAP. 

To him were known neither the mortifications IV. 

of /Kschylus, nor the relentless mockery beeped 

upon Euripides. On his fair name the terrible 

Aristophanes himself affixes m> brand. f The 

Sweetness of his genius extended indeed to his 

temper, and personal popularity assisted his 

public triumphs. Nor does he appear to ha\e 

keenly shared the party animosities of his day ; 
his serenity, like that of Goethe, has in it some- 
thing of enviable rather than hono u rable indif- 
ference* He owed his first distinction to Ciinon, 
— and he served afterwards under Pericles ;— OB 
his entrance into life, he led the youths that 
led the trophy of Grecian freedom — and on 
the verge of death, we shall hereafter lee him 
calnilv assent to the surrender of Athenian li- 
berties. In short, Aristophanes perhaps mingled 
more truth than usual with his wit, when 
even in the shades below, he says of Sophocles, 

* Ho is reported indeed, to have said that he rejoiced in 

the old age which delivered him fromewrere ami impor- 
tunate task-master.— Athen. lih. 1:2. p. 510. But the poet, 
nevertheless, appear* to have retained his amorous propin- 
sities, at least, to the last.— See Atheincus lib. 13. p. 5 - 23. 

f He does, it is true, charge Sophocles with avarice, but 
he atones tor it very handsomely in the ' Frog*.' 

590 ATM I 

book " He was contented heTe he's contented thei 

A disposition thus facile, united with an admi- 
**• fable genius, will, not anoften, effect a mil 
;in<l rec on cile prosperity with fan 

At tlic age of fifty-seven, Sophi 
pointed', as 1 before said, i to a command 
of the ten general! in tin- Samian war; but 
history is itlenl as to bis military g In 

later life are shall again hare occasion to refer to 
him. condemned ai he wm to illu-t r 
career of unprecedented brilliancy — nor i 
subjected to the caprice of the common public,) 
the melancholy moral inculcated by himself, $ 
and so often obtruded upon us by the dram;. 

* M. Schlegel is pleased to indulge in one of his most de- 
clamatory rhapsodies upon the life, ' so dear to the Gods', of 
this 'pious and holy poet.' But Sophocles, in private life, 
was a profligate, and in public life a shuffler and a trimmer, 
if not absolutely a renegade. It was perhaps the very laxity 
of his principles which made him thought so agreeable a fel- 
low. At least, such is no uncommon cause of personal popu- 
larity now-a-days. People lose much of their anger and 
envy of genius, when it throws them down a bundle or two 
of human foibles by which they can climb up to its level. 

t It is said, indeed, that the appointment was the reward 
of a successful tragedy ; it was more likely due to his birth, 
fortune, and personal popularity. 

% It seems, however, that Pericles thought very meanly 
of his warlike capacities. — See Athenaeus, lib. 13, p. G04. 

§ (Edip. Tyr. 1529, <\c. 


of his country, ' never to deem a man happy B00« 

till death itself denies the hazard of reverses/ ....... 

CI 1 A 1 ' . 

Out of the vast, though not accurately known, iv. 
number of the dramas of Sophoch-. leren 

III. A great error has been committed l>\ 
those who class yEschylus and Sophocles together 
as belonging to the same era, ami refer both 

the age of Pericles, because etch was li\i 

while Pericles was in power. We may M well 
class Dr. Johnson and Lord Byron in the same 
age, because both lived in the reign of George 
III. The Athenian rivals were formed under 
the influences of very different generations ; and 
if ./Eschylus lived through a considerable por- 
tion of the career of the younger Sophocles, the 
accident of longevity by no means warrants 
us to consider them the children of the same 
age, — the creatures of the same influem 
.Ksehylus belonged to the race and the period 
from which emerged Themistocles and Aristide< 
— Sophocles to those which produced Phidias 
and Pericles. Sophocles indeed, in the calmness 
of his disposition, and the symmetry and stateli- 
ness of his genius, might almost be entitled the 
Pericles of Poetry. And as the statesman wn- 
ealled the Olympian, not from the headlong \ 
hemence, but the serene majesty of his strength , 


BOM BO of SophocleB al§0 it may be laid, that hi> 

power is risible in lii> repose, ami his thuml 
( BAP. ' ' 

iv- roll from tin- depth of a dear iky. 

IV. The Aged Pericles ist! lit. 1 

It wei not Bophoclei alone that * -t in 

that time ; be was but one of the many who, in 
every department, sought, in itudy and in 
nice, the secrets of the W ise or the Beautiful. 
Pericles ami Phidias were in their several pi 
of lame whafl SophocL Hut it 

not the art of an emasculate or effeminate period 
— itgrew out of the example of a pr< ene- 

ration of men astonishingly great. It was Art 

Still fresh from the wells of Nature. Art with ■ 
vast field yet unexplored, ami in all its youthful 
rigour and maiden enthusiasm. There was, it 
is true, at a period a little later than that in 
which the genius of Sophocles was formed, one 
class of students among whom a false taste and a 
spurious refinement were already visible — the 
class of rhetoricians and philosophical speculators. 
For in fact, the art which belongs to the imagina- 
tion is often purest in an early age ; but that which 
appertains to the reason and intellect is slow be- 
fore it attains mature strength and manly judg- 

* When Sophocles (Athenaeus. i. p. 22,) said that . . 
chylus composed befittingly, but without knowing it, his 
saying evinced the study his compositions had cost himselfl 


ment. Amongst these students was earlv trained hook 

and tutored the thoughtful mind of Euriuid* 

fo J ' HAP. 

— and hence that art which in Sophoclef v.,- u - 
learned in more miscellaneous and active circl 
and moulded by a more powerful imagination, in 
Euripides often sickens hi with the tricks of ■ 
pleader, the quibbles of a schoolman, or the 

dulness of a moralising declaimer. But is, in 

the peculiar attributes and character of liis writ- 
-, Euripides somewhat ton -tailed his age, — 
as his example had a very important influei, 
upon his successors, — as he did not exhibit till 
the fame ofSophocles was already confirmed, — 

and as his name is intimately associated with the 
later age of Aristophanes and Socrates, — it may 
lie more convenient to confine our critic 
animation at prosenl to the tragedies of So- 

Although the three plays of the 4 (Edipus T\ - 
rannus,' the * (Edipus at Colonos,' and the 'Anti- 
gone,' were composed and exhibited at very \s ide 
intervals of time, yet from their connexion with 
each other, they may almost be said to form 
one poem. The 'Antigone,' which concludes the 
story, was the one earliest written ; and there are 
passages in either ' (Edipus' which seem com- 
posed to lead up as it were to the catastrophe 
of the 'Antigone/ and form an harmonious link 



\ . 


l\ . 

between the several dramas. These three pli 
constitute, on the whole, the greatest j>< 
ance of Sophocles, thongh in detached p 
they are equalled by passages in the and 

the ' Pfcflootetes.' 

V. The ' CEdipus Tyrannus' opem An 

;iwt*nl pestilence devastates Thebes. (Edip 
the kmg, la introduced to us, powerful and 
lored : to him whose wisdom had placed li i m <»u 
the throne, look apthe priest and the suppliants, 
for a remedy even amidsl the terrors of the 
plague. (Edipoi informs them thai I 
despatched Creon the brother of his wife .!<>- 
casta,) to the Pythian (Joel to know by what 
piatory deed the city might be delivered fi 
its curse. Scarce has he concluded, when f i 
himself enters, and announces ' glad tidings' 
in the explicit answer of the oracle. The God 
has declared that a pollution had been bred in 
the land, and must be expelled the city, — that 
Laius, the former king, had been murdered, — 
and that his blood must be avenged. Laius had 
left the city, never to return ; of his train but 
one man escaped, to announce his death bv 
sassins, (Edipus instantly resolves to prosecute 
the inquiry into the murder, and orders the peo- 
ple to be summoned. The suppliants rise from 
the altar, and a solemn chorus of the senators of 


Thebes, (in one of the most splendid Lyrics of BOOl 
Sophocles,) cbaunt the terrors of the plague — 

1 that unarmed Mars,' — and implore the protee- IV « 
tion of the divine Averters of Destruction. (Kdi- 
pus then, addressing the chorus, demandi their 
aid to discover the murderer, whom he solemnly 
excommunicates, and dooms, deprived of aid and 

intercourse, to waste slowly out a miserable I 
istence ; nay, if the assassin should h Jit 

refuge in the royal halls, there too shall the 
rengeance he wreaked, and the curse fall. 
" For I," continues (Edipu-, 

" I, who the sceptre which lie wielded, wield ; — 

[, who have mounted to his marriage hed ; — 

I, in whose children (had he issue known) 

His would have claimed a common brotherhood ; — 

Now that the K\il Fate hath fallen oYr him, 

/ am the heir of that dead king's revenge, 

Not less than it' these lips had hailed him 'lather ! 

A few more sentences introduce to us the old 
soothsayer, Tiresias, — for whom, at the instiga- 
tion of Creon, (Edipus had sent. The seer an- 
swers the adjuration of the king with a thrilling 
and ominous hurst — 

" Woe — woe ! — how fearful is the gift of wisdom, 
When to the wise it bears no blessing! — Woe !" 

"~ () ATI I 


v * The haughty ipirfc of GBdipw breaks forth 
tsjup. ■" ""■ gbomj a.„i obscure rarningi of Ihc pro. 

^ j'li.l. 9ii rMUlBllMULUI -row into rhr.s.t-. J n 

l^blnaMooheereii accuses Tiresias himself of 
,,,r Bl « wi « of Uim U d out §pea ka the 
nolo diviner : 

« Aj-kit m ! Abide then by thj am 

I tolemn edicts- oerer ftoa tfaia 
Hold boiMB commune with tbeie ...... or ..,<•; 

there ti.,,,, Meadest-lo u> 

A dialogue of great dramatic power ensues - 
(Edipus accuses Tiresias of abetting his kinsman 
Creon, by whom he had been persuaded to send 
for the soothsayer, in a plot against his thron 

and the seer, who explains nothing and threat 

all things-departs with a dim and fearful pro- 

After a song from the Chorus, in which are 
embodied the doubt, the trouble, the terror 
which the audience may begin to feel-and 
here it may be observed, that with Sophoc 
the chorus always carries on, not the physical 
but the moral, progress of the drama*_Creon 

* « The chorus should be considered as one of the persons 
m the drama, should be a part of the whole, and a sharer in 
the action, not as in Euripides, but as in Sophocles *1 
Anstot. de Poet. Twinings translation. But even in Sopho- 


enters, informed of the suspicion against him- BOOK 
self, which (Edipus had expressed. CEdipui 
whose whole spirit is disturbed by the weird _^ 
and dark threats of Tiresias, repeats the IOCOI 
tion, but wildly and feebly. His vain worldly 1 
doin suggests to him that Creon would >car<vlv 
have asked him to consult Tiresias, nor T 
have ventured on denunciations so tremendo 
had not the two conspired against him : yet ■ 

mysterious awe invades him — he presses OIK 
tions on Creon relative to the murder of Laius, 
and seems more anxious to acquit himself than 
accuse another. 

While the princes contend, the queen, Jocas* 
enters. She eludes their quarrel, learns from 

(Edipus that Tiresias had accused him of the mur- 
der of the deceased king, and, to convince him 
of the falseness of prophetic lore, declares that 
long since it was predicted, that Laius should 
be murdered by his son— joint-offspring of Joca 
and himself. Yet, in order to frustrate the pro- 
pheey, the only son of Laius had been exposed 
to perish upon solitary and untrodden moun- 
tains, while, in after years, Laius himself had 

clef, at least in such of his plays as are left to us, the chorus 
rarely, if ever, is a sharer in the outward and positive action 
of the piece ; it rather carries on and expresses the progi 
of the emotions that spring out of the action. 

l;nnK fallen, in ■ >]><»t where three roadi met, by the 

(1|A] . hand of B Btnngerj Ip thai llif prophecy had 
1V> not come to pass. 

At thi- declaration, t. rroi seizes upon CEdi- 
pus . . He questions Ji rly ami rapidly 

— the place where the murder happened, the 

time ill which it occurred, t! • 

appearance of Laiui — and when In- learnt all, 

his preYBOUf arrogant conviction of iii! 
deaerta him ; and as he i 

mation, — Joca- rei DpOO him. and 

u ahndden as she g;i He inquires what 

train accompanied Laius, — learns that th< 

five persons; that hut one d; that on his 

return to Thebes, seeing CEdipue on the throne, 
the survivor had besought the favour to retire 
from the eity. (Edipus orders this witness of 
the murder to be sent for, and then proceeds to 
relate his own history. He has been taught to 
believe that Polybus of Corinth, and Merope of 
Doris, were his parents. But once at a banquet 
lie was charged with being a supposititious child ; 
the insult galled him, and he went to Delphi to 
consult the oracle. It was predicted to him that 

* — aevw toi irpoq a dTrouKOTtova aval,. — CEdip. Tyr. 746. 
This line shows how much of emotion the actor could ex- 
press in spite of the mask. 


he should commit incest with hi§ mother, and book 

\ . 

that his father should fall bv his hand. Ap- 

J l CHAP. 

palled and horror-stricken, he resolves to fly the ,v - 
possible fulfilment of the prophecy, and return 
no more to Corinth. In his flight, by the triple 
road described by Jocasta, he meets an old man 
in a chariot, with B guide or herald and other 
servitors. They attempt to thrust him from the 
road — a contest ensues — he alayi the old man and 
his train. Could this be Laius ? Can it be to the 
marriage couch of the man he slew that he hai 
ascended ! No, his tear- are too credulous! — 
He clings to a straw ; the herdsman who had es- 
caped the slaughter of Laius and his attendant! 
may prove that it was not the king whom he 
encountered. Joeasta sustains this hope — she 
cannot believe a prophecy — for it had been fore- 
told that Laius should fall by the hand of his 
son, and that son had long since perished on 
the mountains. The queen and (Edipus retire 
within their palace ; the Chorus resume their 
strains ; after which, Jocasta reappears on her 
way to the temple of Apollo to offer sacrifice 
and prayer. At this time a messenger arri i 
to announce to (Edipus the death of Polybus, 
and the wish of the Corinthians to elect (Edi- 
pus to the throne ! At these tidings Jocasta i-< 

VOL. II. m m 


\ nil 

nook " Predictions of the (j(kIh, wl 

Lett l»\ tin- ioo'i doomed band I bould fall, 

'flic son became a wanderer on tin- earth, 
not the son. hut Nat tit , 

GSdipui, summoned to tin- m p, learni 

the news of his supposed father*! death ! h 
dread and tragic thought, but the pious (Edipus 

lad that his father i- no more, since In- himself 
is thus saved from parricide ; yet the oth»-r part 
of the prediction haunts him. His mother! — 
she yet lives. Be reveals to the me rthe 

prophecy, and his terror. To cheer him, tin- 
messenger now informs him that he Is //"/ tin- 
son of Meropt* ami Polyhus. A babe had been 
found in the entangled forest-dells of Cithssron 
by a herdsman and slave of Laius — he had given 
the infant to another — that other, the messenger 
who now tells the tale. Transferred to the i 
of Polybus and Merope, the babe became to them 
as a son, for they were childless. Jocasta hears 
— stunned and speechless — till CEdipus, yet un- 
conscious of the horrors still to come, turn 
demand of her, if she knew the herdsman who 
had found the child. Then she gasps wildly 
out — 

" Whom speaks he of? Be silent — heed it not — 
Blot it out from thy memory ! — it is evil ! 



(Edipus. It cannot be— the due n here — ami 1 hook 


Will trace it through that labyrinth — my birth.— 

I \ 1'. 

Jocasta. By all the Qodl 1 WW tliei . tin :!i. -;ikt- 1\- 

Of thine own life, beware; it is enough 
For me to hear and madden !" 

CEdipus (suspecting only that the pride of hi- 
queen revolts from the thought of ber hntbmd'i 
birth being proved bate and servile) replii 

" Nay, nay, cheer thee ! 
Were I through three descents threefold a slave, 
My shanif would not touch tin 

Jocasta. I do implore tin . 

This once obey me — this on 

(Edipus. I will not ! 

To truth I grope my way. 

Jocasta. And yet what love 

Speaks in my voice! Thine ignorance is thy bliss. 

(IJdipus. A bliss that torturet ' 

Jocasta. Miserable man ! 

Oh could'st thou never learn the thing thou art ! 

(Edipus. Will no one quicken this slow herdsman's steps 
The unquestioned birthright of a royal name 
Let this proud queen possess! — 

Jocasta. Woe I « oe ! thou wretch ! 

Woe ! my last word ! — words are no more for me !" 

M M 2 



book \\ ith this .l<>r;iM:i rashei from the -erne. Still 
CEdipus misoonstroei ber warning; be a 
'*• herf the loyalty of her spirit. For himself, 

I'mliim \\;i- hi- mother, ami had hh-t him; — 
nor could tin- acridi-nt of birth hi- in- 

heritance from nature. The ChOTIll give P I 

their hope- ' their wise, their glorious (Edipos, 
might have Imth bora ■ Tkeban! The herdsmen 

enters : like TuecisS, be i- 1 « > 1 1 x to -j>.;ik. The 

fiery king extorts his secr.t. lipOS is 

the son of* Laius and .loca-ta- -at his hirth the 
terrible propheciei of the Pythian induced his 
own mother to expose him on the mountains — 

the compassion of the herdsman tared him — 
laved him to become the bridegroom of his 
mother, the assassin of his sire. The astonish- 
ing art with which, from step to step, the 
audience and the victim are led to the climax of 
the discovery, is productive of an interest of 
pathos and of terror, which is not equalled by 
the greatest masterpieces of the modern stage,* 
and possesses that species of anxious excitement 
which is wholly unparalleled in the ancient. 
The discovery is the true catastrophe — the phy- 

* " Of all discoveries, the best is that which arises from 
the action itself, and in which a striking effect is produced 
by probable incidents. Such is that in the CEdipus of So- 
phocles." — Aristot. de Poet., Twining's Trans. 


sical denouement is but an adjunct to the moral book 
one. Jocasta, on quitting the scent 1 , had 
passed straight to the bridal-chamber, and there, iv. 
by the couch from which had -prung a double 
and accursed progeny, perished by her own 
hands. Meanwhile, the predestined parricide, 
bursting into the chamber, beheld, as the last 
object on earth, the corpse of his wife and mo- 
ther ! Once more (Edipus re-appears, barfed 
for ever from the light of day. In the tun 
his remorse, he " had smote the balls of his own 
eyes," and the wise balHer of the sphinx, (Edipus, 
the haughty, the insolent, the illustrious, is a 
forlorn and despairing outcast. But amidst all 
tlit horror of the concluding scene, a beautiful 
and softening light breaks forth. Blind, power- 
less, excommunicated, Creon, whom (Edipus 
accused of murder, has now become his judge 
and his master. The great spirit, crushed be- 
neath its intolerable woes, is humbled to the 
dust ; and the ■ wisest of mankind' implores but 
two favours — to be thrust from the land an exile, 
and once more to embrace his children. Even in 
translation the exquisite tenderness of this pas- 
sage cannot altogether fail of its effect. 

" For my fate, let it pass ! My children, Creon ! 
My sons — nay. they the bitter wants ot* life 



BOOK M»J BMUttt 1 //"'/ rtt—tay darlings — 


Why, never sate I al m\ Ik. uphold board 

I\ • Witbotll their blessed looks — our very hread 

W« brake together ;— thou It he kind to them 

P«r my sake, Creon — and. | 

Lit mm hut tone h them — feel tluiu with ihCM hand-. 

And pour such sorrow as may speak fart well 

( » < i ills that iniivt he theirs ! I'.v thy pure In 

i thine is pure — do this, sweet prince. Methinks 
I should not miss these eyes, could I hut toad) them. 
What shall I say to move t! 

Sobs ! — And d>> I 
Oh do I hear my sweet ones ? Hast thou sent. 
In mercy sent, my children to my arms? 
Speak — speak— I do not dream ! 

Creon. They are thy children, 

I would not shut thee from the dear delight 
In the old time they gave thee. 

(Edipus. Blessings on thee ! 

For this one mercy mayst thou find above 
A kinder God than I have. Ye — where are ye ? 
My children — come ! — nearer and nearer yet," &c. 

The pathos of this scene is continued to the 
end ; and the very last words (Edipus utters, 
as his children cling to him, implore that they 
at least, may not be torn away. 


Il is in this concluding scene, that the art of Hu,,k 
the play is consummated; the horrors of the CHAP 
catastrophe, which, if a last impression, would n • 
have left behind a too painful and gloomy feel- 
ing, arc softened down by this beautiful reSOft t<> 
the tenderest and holiest sources of emotion. 
And the pathos 18 rendered douhlv effective, not 
Only from the immediate contrast of the terror 

that preceded it, but from the masterly skill 

with which all display of the softer features in the 

character of (Edipus is reserved to the clo 

In the breaking up of the strong mind and the 
daring spirit, when empire, honour, name, are 
all annihilated, the heart is seen, as it were, 
surviving the wrecks around it, and dinging 
for support to the Affections. 

VI. In the 'U^dipus at Colonos,' the blind kin- 
is presented to us, after the lapse of years, a wan- 
derer over the earth, unconsciously taking his 
refuge in the grove of the Furies* — M the awful 

* But the spot consecrated to those deities which men 
•• tremble to name," presents all the features of outward 
loveliness that contrast and refine, as it were, the metaphy- 
seal terror of the associations. And the heautiful descrip- 
tion of Colonos itself, which is tin that Sophoch 
said to have read to his judges, before whom he was accused 
of dotage, seems to paint a home more fit for the Graces than 
the furies. The Chorus inform the stranger that he has 
come to " the white Colonos 


ATI 1 1 

book goddesses, daughter! th and Dut-kneea." 

ciiAi' "' s > nll,| u' ( li"i-l)t<i-. Antigone, one of tin- most 

IV- lovely creations of poetry, i> bit companion and 
guide; he is afterward-, joined l»\ lii«, other 
daughter, bmene, irhoae weak and selutfa cha- 
racter ii drawn in itrong contrast to the her 
and devotion of Antigone. The ancient propbe- 

Wherc ever and aye, through tl i Jo, 

Gush the wailing notes of the nightingale 
From bet (MOM win re the dark-hiu>: 
With the grove of the God a night of leaves ; 
And the vines blossom out from the lonely gL 
And the suns of the summer are dim in the shade. 
And the storms of the winter have never a bn 
That can shiver a leaf from the charmed trees, 
For there, O ever there, 
With that fair Mountain Throng, 
Who his sweet nurses were, 1 
Wild Bacchus holds his court, the conscious woods among 1 
Daintily, ever there, 
Crown of the mighty goddesses of old, 
Clustering Narcissus with his glorious hues 
Springs from his bath of heaven's delicious dews, 
And the gay crocus sheds his rays of gold. 

' The nymphs of Nisa. 


cies that foretold his woes, had foretold also his book 
release. His last shelter and resting-place were 
to he obtained from the Dread Deities, and a rign 1V - 
of thunder, or earthquake, or lightning, vai feo 
announce his parting hour. Learning the >pot to 
which his steps had been guided, (Edipus - 
lemnly feels thai his doom approaches : thus at 
the very opening of the poem, be Stands before us 
on the verge of a mysterious grave. 

The sufferings which have bowed the parricide 
to a premature old age,* have not crushed lii-. 

And wandering then fin ew-r. 

The fountains are at play, 
And Cephisus feeds his ri\ i 

From their sweet urns, day b\ day. 

fhe river knows no dearth ; 
Adown the vale the lapsing water> ^lide, 
And the pure rain of that pellueid tide 

Calls the rife beauty from the heart of earth ; 
While by the banks the Muses' choral train 
Are duly heard — and there, Love cheeks her golden 

* yepoyra S'opdovy, <f>\avpoy, oq kcoc Treat). 

CEdip. Col. '396. 

Thus, though his daughter had only grown up from child- 
hood to early womanhood, CEdipus has passed from youth to 
age since the date of the CEdipus Tyrannus. 

v I'll I \ s : 

hook spirit; the softness ;iml -el (humiliation which 
wen: the first remlti of hie awful affliction. 

CHAP. . 

i\. past away, tie u grown once more vehement 

and pankmiltO lroin tin- MOM of WTOU 

morse vtill rishi liim. Imt if alternated with tin- 
yet mon- Iranian feeling of resentment at the 

unjust severity of hi* doom.* His son-, who. 

! hv a word,' might hare saved liim from the 
expulsion, penury, and wanderings he Ims 
undergone, had deserted his cause— had looked 
with indifferent eyes on hii awful woes had 
joined with Creon to expel him from the Thebfifl 
land. They are the Gdneril and Regan of the 
e lassie Lear, as Antigone is the Cordelia on 
whom he leans — a Cordelia he has oever thrust 
from him. " When," says CEdipuS, in stern 
bitterness of soul, 

«* When my soul boiled within me — when ' to die' 

Was all my prayer — and death was sweetness,—)- 

Had they but stoned me like a dog, I'd bless'd them j 

Then no man rose against me — but when time 

Brought its slow comfort — when my wounds were teamed — 

All my griefs mellow'd, and remorse itself 

Judged my self-penance mightier than my sins, 

Thebes thrust me from her breast, and they, my sons, 

* See his self-justification, 060—1000. 


My blood, mine offspring, from their father shrunk : HOOK 

A word of theirs had saved me — one small word — 

They said it not — and lo ! the wandering beggar !" IT. 

In the meanwhile, during the exile of (Edipua, 
strife had broken out between the brotht 
Eteocles, here represented as the younger, dr 
out Polyniccs, and seized the throne; Polynire- 
takes refuge at Argos, where In- prepares war 
against the usurper ; an oracle declares that 
success shall be with that party which (Edipua 
joins, and a mysterious blessing is pronounced 
on the land which contains his bones. Thus, 
the possession of this wild tool of Fate— raited 
up in age to a dread and ghastly consequence — 
becomes the argument of the pla\ , a- his 
death must become the catastrophe. It i- 
the deep and Herce revenge of (Edipus that 
makes the passion of the whole. Accord- 
ing to a sublime conception, we Bee before us 
the physical (Edipus in the lowest state of > 
titution and misery — in rags, blindness, beg- 
gary, utter and abject impotence. But in the 
moral (Edipus is all the majesty of a power still 
royal. The oracle has invested one, so fallen 
and so wretched in himself, with the power of 
a god — the power to confer victory on the cause 
he adopts, prosperity on the land that beconn > 

540 ATHENS : 

k hi- tomb. With all the rOTODgO of age, all tin 

grand malignity of hatred, he clingi to tl 
i\. dow and relic of a sceptre. Cn t t h« 

oracle, eomei to pecal him to Tin i - rhel 
cheroni kinsman hnmblet bimaelf before hi- 

t i nt — he is the suppliant of the beggar, who d< 
andapurm him. Creon ai enges himself byseiz 
on Antigone and Itmene. Nothing can be more 
dramatically effective than the icene in which 
these last props of his age are tern from the da* 
solate ol«l man. The} are ultimately rest or ed 
to him by Theseus, whose amiable and lofty 
character is painted with all the partial glow of 
colouring which an Athenian poet would natu- 
rally lavish on the Athenian Alfred. W C 
next introduced to Polynices. He, like ( i 
has sought (Edipus with the selfish motive of 
recovering his throne by means of an ally, to 
whom the oracle promises victory. But there is 
in Polynices the appearance of a true penitence, 
and a mingled gentleness and majesty in his 
bearing which interest us in his fate, despite 
his faults, and which were possibly intended 
by Sophocles to give a new interest to the plot 
of the ' Antigone,' composed and exhibited long 
before. (Edipus is persuaded by the bene- 
volence of Theseus, and the sweet interces- 
sion of Antigone, to admit his son. After a 


chaunt from the Chorus on the ills of old age,* book 
Polynices enters. He is struck with the waited ^ 

and miserable appearance of the old man, and If. 
bitterly reproaches his own desertion. 

"But since," he says, with almost a chris- 
tian sentiment, — 

" Since o'er each iked, upon the Olympian throne, 
Mm \ sits joint presider with great Jove- 
Let her, O father, also take her stand, 
Within thv soul— and judge me I The past sins 
I ( i have their erne —ah, would they had recal ! 
Why are you voiceless ? Speak to me, m\ father ! 
Turn not away — will you not answer me: te 

(EdipUB retains his silence in spite of the 
prayers of his beloved Antigone, and Polynices 
proceeds to narrate the wrongs he has under- 
gone from Eteocles, and, warming with a 
young warrior's ardour, paints the array that 
he has mustered on his behalf— promises to 
restore CEdipus to his palace-- and, alluding 

* As each poet had but three actors allowed him, the 
song of the Chorus probably gave time for the repre- 
sentative of Theseus to change his dress, and re-appear as 

542 ati M m 

HOOK to the oracle, throwi himself <>n lii*> fathi 

CHAP. ' 
IV. Then, at. last, outspeaks (EdipUS, and from 

reproach bur-t- into nJNtft 

"And now you weep; — yon wtpl nm it thtM woe* 

I'ntil wipt yam own. Hut I / .1. 

ThtM things are not lor trar>. hut lor rndurai 

M\ son is like his sire — a j>. 

I il, exile, beggary — daily bread doled out 

From lUaiIgM li;n . ■ -. my son! 

My nurses, guardians — they who share the VI 

Or earn the bread, are daughters ; call them not 

Women, for they to me are men. Go to ! — 

Thou art not mine — 1 do disclaim such issue. 

Hehold, the eyes of the avenging God 

Are o'er thee ! but their ominous light delays 

To blast thee yet. March on — march on — to The! 

Not — not for thee, the city and the throne ; 

The earth shall first be reddened with thy blood — 

Thy blood and his, thy foe — thy brother ! Curses! 

Not for the first time summoned to my wrongs — 

Curses ! I call ye back, and make ye now 

Allies with this old man ! 

• «•••• 

Yea, Curses shall possess thy seat and throne, 
If antique Justice o'er the laws of earth 



Reign with the Thunder God. .March on to ruin ! 
Spurned and disowned — the basest of the base — 
And with thee bear this burthen : — o'er thine hi 
1 pour a prophet's doom ; nor throne nor home 
Waits on the sharpness of the levelled spear : 
Thy very land of refuse hath no welcome j 
Thine eyes have looked their last on hollow Ar_ 
Death by a brother's hand — dark fratricide. 
Murthering thyself a brother — shall be thine. 
Yet, while 1 curse thee, on the murky deep 
Of the prinueval Hell, I call Prepare 
These men their home, dread Tartarus J — Godd 
Whose shrines are round me — ye avenging Fm 
And thou, O Lord of Battle, who hast >tirred 
Hate in the souls of brethren, hear me — hear | 
And now, 'tis past ! — enough! — depart and tell 
The Theban people, and thy find all, 
What blessings, from his refuse with the I'm w 
The blind old (Edipus awards his sons !"* 


V . 



As is usual with Sophocles, the terrific strength 
of these execrations is immediately followed by 

a soft and pathetic scene between Antigone and 

* The imagery in the last two hne> has been amplified 
from the original in order to bring before the reader what 
the representation would have brought before the spec- 


>44 ATM l\ 

booji her brother. Though crushed .-it first by th.- 
paternal curse, the spirit of Polyu 
n - recovers it- satire courage that he will 

listen to the prayer <»f bit lister t<> deeisl from 
tin- expedition to Thebes, and to turn hit arm 
hack to A rgoa ** What "' I." 

m1 beck n tray that oouM dean I trembled!" 

iel li«- feehi tin- mournful persuasion that hi-> 
death is doomed ; and a glimpse of the plot of the 
1 Antigone' it opened upon ui by bis prayer to 

his sister that if he perish, they should lay 
him with due honours in the tomb. The 
quisite loveliness of Antigone's character touches 
even Polynices, and he departs, saying, 

" With the Gods rests the balance of our fate ; 

But thee, at least — O never upon thee 

May evil fall! Thou art too good for sorrow !" 

The Chorus resume their strains, when suddenly 
thunder is heard ; and CEdipus hails the sign 
that heralds him to the shades. Nothing can 
be conceived more appalling than this omen. 
It seems as if CEdipus had been spared but to 
curse his children, and to die. He summons 
Theseus, tells him that his fate is at hand, and 


that without a guide he himself will point out hook 
the spot where he shall rest. Never mai that 
spot be told — that secret and solemn grave shall IT. 
be the charm of the land, and a defence againsl 
its Iocs. CEdiptlS then turns round, and tin- 
instinct within guides him BS he gropes aim 

Eiis daughters and Theseus folio* the blind man. 

amazed and awed. '* Hither,'" li 

"Hither — by this «raj come — (or this way leads 
The Unseen Conductor of the Deed* — and She, 
Whom Shadow! call their Queen! I — () Light, tweet light 
Rayleei to me — mute once, end even now 

I liH'l thee palpable, round this worn form 

Clinging in last embrace 1 go to ihroud 
The waning lira in the Eternal Hail 

Thus the stage is left to the Chorus, and the 
mysterious fate of (Edipui ia recited l»\ the 

Nuntius, in verses which Longinus has m>t 
tolled too highly. (Ediptu had led the way lo 
■ cavern, well known in legendary lore as the 
spot where Pirithous and Theseus had pledged 
their faith, by the brazen steps which make one 
of the entrances to the infernal realm - 

' Mercury. Proserpine. 

VOL. II. \ \ 

54G Mil 




"Between which place and the Thorician itone — 
nHA p The liollow thorn, and the lepaJchral pfla 

1 1{ sate him down* 

And when he had performed libanom from the 
Stream, :m<l laved, and decked himself in tin- 
funereal robet, Jove thundered beneath the earth, 
and the old man's daughters, aghast with' hon 
fell ut his Inees with M>bf and groans. 

" Then o'er then as t! hii hands he i 

And'O my children/ takl he, 'from fliil <l iv 
W liave no more a father — all of me 
Withers away — the burthen and the toil 
Of mine old age fall on ye nevermore. 
Sad travail have ye borne for me, and \c t 
Let one thought soften grief when I am gone — 
The thought that none upon the desolate world 
Loved you as I did ; — and in death I leave 
A happier life to you !' 

- Thus movingly, 
With clinging arms and passionate sobs, the three 
Wept out aloud, until the sorrow grew 
Into a deadly hush — nor cry nor wail 
Starts the drear silence of the solitude. 
Then suddenly a bodiless voice is heard, — 
It call'd on him — it call'd ; and over all 


Horror fell cold, and stirr'd the bristling hair ' l. ( M)K 

Again, the Voice— again— ' Ho! (Edipus, 

_ ,. CHAP. 

Why linger we s<> long? Come — hither — come. ' 1\. 

(Edipiu then solemnly consigns his children to 
Theseus, dismisses them, ami Theseus alone i- 

left with the old man. 

u So groaning we depart — and when once U 
We turned our eye- behold, the pi 

Knew not the man ! The king alum was there, 
Holding his spread hands o'er averted brows, 
As If to shut from out the quailing ga/i\ 
The horrid aspect of some ghastly thing 
That nature durst not look on. So we pai: 
Until the king awakened from the terror, 
And to the mother Earth, and high Olympus. 
Si at of the gods, he breathed awe-stricken pra\ 
But, how the old man perished, >ave the king, 
Mortal can ne'er divine ; for bolt, nor levin, 
Nor blasting tempest from the ocean borne, 
Was heard or seen ; but either was he rapt 
Aloft by wings divine, or else the shades. 
Whose darkness never looked upon the sun, 
Yawned in grim mercy, and the rent abytl 
Engulfd the wanderer from the living world." 

Such, sublime in its wondrous power, its 

■ 2 

548 viii 

book appalling m\ it* dim, religion! terror, i 


the catastrophe of the '(Edipua' at < loloi 


i\ The linee that follow an- derated to the lumen* 
tatiom of tli.- daughter!, and appear wholly su- 
perfluoue, onlen ire can eonaider that Sophocles 
deaired to Indicate the odnnection of the '(Edipua 1 

vith the ■ An: by informing us that the 

daughter! of CEdipui are to be sent to Thi 
at the reqmeet of Antigone bereelf, who hopes, 
in the tender cou i her nature, that 

may perhaps prevent the predicted slaughter of 
her hrothers. 

VII. Corning now to the tragedy of ( Antigone, 1 
we find the prophecy of (Edipu- ha- been ful- 
filled — the brothers hare bile* by the hand of 
each other — the Argive army baa been defeated 
— Creon has obtained the tyranny, and inter- 
dicts, on the penalty of death, the burial of Po- 
lynices, whose corpse remains guarded and un- 
honoured. Antigone, mindful of her brother's 
request to her in their last interview, resolves to 
brave the edict, and perform those rites so in- 
dispensably sacred in the eyes of a Greek. 
She communicates her resolution to her sister 
Ismene, whose character, still feeble and com- 
mon-place, is a perpetual foil to the heroism 
of Antigone. She acts upon her resolutions, 
baffles the vigilant guards, buries the corpse. 


Creon, on learning that his edict has been SO- hook 
cretly disobeyed, orders the remains to be die- 

, CHAP. 

interred, and in a second attempt, Antigone IV. 
is discovered, brought before him, and con- 
demned to death. Ihemon, tli.' son of Creon, 

had been affianced to Antigone. On tlie newi 
of her lenience, be sea&i Creon, and after i 

violent scin- between the two, which has nei- 
ther the power nor the dignity common to 8 

phoclee, departs with rogue menaces, A short 

but most exquisite invocation to Love from the 
( !horus succeeds, and in this, it m;iv he ob- 
served, the Chorus express much left not re- 

presented in the action tliev senre so 

impress on the spectator all the irresistible ef- 
fects of the passion, which the modern artist 
would seek to represent in some moving sc< 

between Antigone ami lla-mon. The heroine 
herself now passes across the stage on her wa\ 
to her dreadful doom, which is that of living 
burial in "the cavern of a rock." She' thus 
addresses the Chorus, 

" Ye, of the land a herein inv fathers dwelt. 
Behold me journeying to my latest bourne ! 
Time hath no morrow for these eyes. Black Orcus, 
Whose court hath room for all, leads my lone steps 
Evn whilst I live — to Shadows. Not for me 

560 miii.vs: 

BOOK The nuptial bli liymn : — 


IV. (Chorus.) Honoured and mourn. 

Nor struck by slow disease, or \iolcnt hand, 

Th\ steps glide to th< udged, lil m,* 

'I'hou, ahove mortal- gifted, -halt de« 

All Uving to the shades. 

rone. M< think- I haw heard — 

So legends go — how Phrygian Niobe, 

i I'oor stranger,) on the heightl of SipyluH, 

Mournfully died. The hard rock, like tin tt ndrils 

O* the ivy, clung and crept unto her heart : — 

Her, nevermore, dissolving into show. 

Pale snows desert ;— and from her sorrowful i 

As from unfailing founts, adown the c 

Fall the eternal dews. Like her, the God 

Lulls me to sleep, and into stone !" 

Afterwards she adds, in her beautiful lament. 
"That she has one comfort— she shall go 

to the grave dear to her parents and bar 

The grief of Antigone is in perfect harmony 

with her character — it betrays no repentance, 

no weakness — it is but the natural sorrow of 

youth and womanhood, going down to that 

• AvTvkOfjioc. — Antig. 821. 


grave which had so little of hope in the old BOOK 

(i reek religion. In an Antigone on our stage 
we might have demanded more reference to her i\- 
lover; but the Grecian heroine namei btm not, 
and alludes rather to the loss of tin- woman's lot 
of wedlock, than tht' loss of the individual bride- 
groom. Hut it is not for that reason that ire IN 
to conclude with M. Schlegel, and others, that 
the Greek women knew not the sentiment of 
love. Such a notion, that has obtained an 1111- 

accountable belief, I shall hereafter show to be 

at variance with all the poetry of the Greeks — 
with their drama itself— with their modes of life 
— and with the very elements of that human 
nature, which is everywhere the same. Hut 
Sophocles, in tin- character of Antigone, personi- 
fies duty, not passion. It i> to this, her leading, 
individuality, that whatever Blight weaken the 
pure and statue-like effect of the creation i- >acri- 
fieed. As she was to her lather, so i- her 

brother. The sorrows and calamities of her 
family have so endeared them to her heart that 
she has room for little else. " Formed," 
she exquisitely says of herself, li to love, not to 
hate,"* she lives but to devote affections the m 

* <)v rot avte^Oetf, tiXXa <rvfi <pt\elv ttpvv. 

Anlig. o'J'o. 

book sacred to sad and pious tasks, and die la-t t'ul- 

tilled, »he hai dolir \\ itli earth. 

(|IA| '- M. V I 

IV, \\ lieu Antigone is borne away, aa in; 

personage is presented t<> n-. vr] r? name 

to as, nnIk> usually read the (Edipus Tyrannus 
before the Antigone, ii the foreteller of Omen 
and doom* Aa in the (Edipus Tyrannus, Tin 
the eoothtayer appean to annoonce all the 
ran thai ensue so now, nt the crowning d< 
lation of that fated honee, he, the Nleii and 
myateriom survivor «»t" such dark, tragedii 
ain brought upon the stage. The aognriee 

have hem rvil — birds hattlr with each other in 

the air — tlie flame aril! not mount from tli< 

crificial victim — and the altar- and hearthf BTC 
full of birda and dogs, gathering to their hast on 
the corpse of Polynices. The soothsayer enjoins 

( reon not to war against the dead, and to accord 
the rites of burial to the prince's body. On the 
obstinate refusal of Creon, Tiresias utters pro- 
phetic maledictions and departs. Creon, wl 
vehemence of temper is combined with a feeble 
character, and strongly contrasts the mighty 
spirit of (Edipus, repents, and is persuaded by 
the Chorus to release Antigone from her living 
prison, as well as to revoke the edict which 
denies sepulture to Polynices. He quits the 
stage for that purpose, and the Chorus burst 

ITS USE AND I A 1. 1.. 553 

into one of their most picturesque odes, an In- aOOl 
vocation to Bacchus, thus inadequately pre- 
sented to the English reader. it. 

() thou, whom earth by many ■ title hails, 
Son of the Thunder-Gad; and wild delight 

Of the wild Tbeban maid I 
\\ bather <>n far [talia'i shorts oi>t \ \1. 
Or irhai i - joint th) solemn rites. 

With tin' Great -Mother's,* in mysterious vales, — 

Bacchus in Bacchic Thabo best known. 

Thy Thebeaj who claims the Thyada us her daughters; 
Pail In the fields with warriors dragon-sown, 
And where Ismenus rolls his rapid water*. 
It saw thee, the smoke. 
On the honied height — f 

ind broke 
With a leap into light ; — 
Where roam C 'urvcian nymphs the glorious mountain, 
And all melodious flows the old C'astalian fountain:-- 
Vocal with echoes wildly-glad. 
The Nysian steeps with ivy clad, 
And shores with vineyards greenly blooming, 

■ Ci 

-[ wrcp k,W'('»- wtrpac — via. Parnassus. The Bacchanalian 
light on the double crest of Parnassus, which announced the 
god, is a favourite allusion with the Greek poets. 

554 a i in i 

BOOH Proclaiming, -i. ep to ibore, 


That Baccln n, 


I\ ■ Is guardian ot the r.i 

Wlu it lit- bokb hil dwclliiiL'-pl 

With In | itli. 

Of tin- thunder*! glowing death, 
In tin' glare of ber glory cooraming. 

() now with healiag steps along the slope 
Of lov'd Parnassus, or in gliding motion, 

. the far-sounding deep BabCBBfl ocean — 
me ! for Wt pariah com ! — our Lord and bopl 

Leader of the stately choir 
Of the great stars, ir h eee rery breath is light, 

Who dost with hymns inspire 
Voices, O youngest god, that sound by night ; 

Come, with thy Maenad throng, 
Come with the Maidens of thy Naxian isle, 
Who chaunt their Lord Iacchus— all the while, 
Maddening, with mystic dance, the solemn midnight long ! 

At the close of the Chorus the Nuntius enters 
to announce the catastrophe, and Eurydice, the 
wife of Creon, disturbed by rumours within her 
palace, is made an auditor of th« narration. 
Creon and his train, after burying Polynices, 
* His mother, Semele. 

c HAP. 


repair to the cavern in which Antigone had been hook 
immured. They hear loud waitings within 
" that unconsecrated chamber " — it is the voice 
ofHaemon. Creon recoils — tin- attendant- en- 
ter — within the cavern they behold Antigone, 
who, in the horror of that death-like solitude 
had strangled herself with the zone of* her robe ; 
— and there washer lover lying beside, oil aim- 
clasped around her waist. Creon at length 
advances, perceives his son, and conjures him to 
come forth. 

" Then, glaring on his father with wild ej 
The son stood dumb) and spat upon his face, 
And clutched the unnatural sword — the father tied, 
And, wroth, as with the arm that mined a parent. 
The wretched man drove home unto his hi 
The ahhorrent steel ; yet e\er, while dim M 
Struggled within the last-expiring soul — 
Techier, and feebler still, his stiffening arms 
Clung to that virgin form— and every gasp 
Of his last breath, with bloody dews distainetl 
The cold white cheek that was his pillow. So 
Lies death embracing death !* 

* Aristotle finds fault with the incident of the son at- 
tcmpting to strike his father, as being shocking, yet not tragic 
— that is, the violent action is episodical, since it is not carried 

1 1 III.'. 

hook In tin- iiiiil-f «>f tin- descriptkjf] tine 

■broke of art. Eurydice. the mother of Hssmon, 

< HAP. 

iv. abruptly and silently quits the stage. 1 WTien 
next we hear of her the hai destroyed her- 
ielf, with bar last breath enrsiog her lm-- 
oand as the murderer of her child. The end 
of the play I I Ireou the sun ivor. He 

himself <l<>es not parish, for In- himself has 
never excited our -\ mpathies. I ll<- ii punished 
through hii son and wife- they dead, our in- 
terest ceases in him, and to add Id- death to 

into effect : \ct. If ire might connect the plot of the 'Antigone' 

with the former plays of either 'CEdtpus,' there is something 
of retribution in the attempted parricide when we remem- 
ber the hypocritical and cruel severity of Creon to the in- 
voluntary parricide of (Edipill The wlmie description of the 
son in that living tomb, glaring on his father with his drawn 
sword, the dead form of his betrothed, with the subsequent 
picture of the lovers joined in death, constitutes one of the 
most masterly combinations of pathos and terror in an- 
cient or modern poetry. 

* This is not the only passage in which Sophocles ex- 
presses feminine woe by silence. In the Trachinia?, Deianira 
vanishes in the same dumb abruptness when she hears from 
her son the effect of the centaur's gift upon her husband. 

-j- According to that most profound maxim of Aristotle, 
that in tragedy a very bad man should never be selected as 
the object of chastisement, since his fate is not calculated to 
excite our sympathies. 


theirs, and to that of Antigone, would be book 

VIII. In the tragedy of ' Electra,' the character iv. 
of the heroine stands out in the boldest contra-t to 
the creation of the Antigone ; both are endow 
with surpassing majesty and strength of nature 
— they are loftier than the daughters of men, 
their very loveliness i< of an age when \i' 
were no distant ancestors of kings — when, 
M in the early sculptors of Pall, 
Aphrodite, something of the ten 

was deemed necessary to the realisation of the Di- 
vine; and the Beautiful had not lost the eolotsal 

proportions of the Sublime, Hut the strength and 

heroism of Antigone is derived from love- 1<> 
sober, serene, august— hut still love. Hire- 
on the contrary, is supported ami exalted ah 

her sex by the might of her hatred. IK-r father, 
' the king of men/ foully murthered in his pa- 
lace herself compelled to consort with his 
assassins — to receive from their hands both cha- 
rity and insult — the adulterous murderer on her 
father's throne, and lord of her father's marriage 
bed* — her brother, a wanderer and an outcast 
Such are the thoughts unceasingly before her ! 
— her heart and soul have for years fed upon the 

* Electa* 1. 850—000. 


\i ins'.s : 

booi bitternest of a resentment, at once impotent and 

intense, and nature itself lias turned to gall. 

iv. She sees not in Clytemnestra a mother, but the 
mnrderesi of a father. The <1« >i i l>r and the coin. 
ponctioa of ne modern Bamle4 are unknown to 
her more masenline spirit She livei on l>nt in 
the hope of her brothei d, and of reven 

The play opens with the appearance of (>r«stes, 

I'yladi -.and an old attendant — arrived at break of 

day at the habitation of the Pelopida — " ) 
with Mood"— tl. of Agamemnon. Ores! 

who had hern saved in ehihlhood by his sister 

from the designs ofClytemnestra and ms, 

has now returned, in manhood. It is 

that, in order to lull all suspicion in the royal 
adulterers, a false account of the death of 
Orestes by an accident in the Pythian gai: 
shall be given to Clytemnestra ; and Orestes 
and Pylades themselves are afterwards to be 
introduced in the character of Phocians, bearing 
the ashes of the supposed dead. Meanwhile the 
two friends repair to the sepulchre of Aga- 
memnon to offer libations, &c. Electra then 
appears, indulges her indignant lamentations at 
her lot, and consoles herself with the hope 
of her brother's speedy return. 

She is joined by her sister Chrysothemis, 
who is bearing sepulchral offerings to the tomb 


of Agamemnon ; and in this inteni ihocles, book 

with extraordinary skill and deep knowledge of 
human nature, contrives to excite our adinira- iv. 
tion and sympathy for the Vehement Electra 
by contrasting her with the weak and mush 
Chrysothemis. Her very bitterness against her 
mother is made to assume the guise of ■ solenai 

duty t<> her lather. Her unfeminine fpialir 

rise into courage and magnanimity — she glor 
in I lie unkindness and persecution she me 
with from Clytemnestra and iEgisthus — to 
are proofs of her reverence to the dead. Woman 
as Bhe is, she is yet the daughter of a king — 
she cannot submit to an usurper — "she will not 
add cowardice to misery." ( 'hrysothemis infon 
Blectra that on the return of iEgisthus it i- 
!ved to consign her to a vault ' where she 
may chaunt her woes unheard.' Eleetra teams 
the meditated sentence undismayed —she will not 
moderate her unwelcome woe — u she will not 
hi- a traitress to those she loves." But a dream 
has appalled Clytemnestra — Agamemnon hat 
appeared to her as in life. In the vision he 
seemed to her to fix his sceptre in the soil, 
whence it sprouted up into a tree that over- 
si ladowed the whole land. Disquieted and 
conscience-stricken, she now sends Chrysotheinifl 
with libations to appease the manes of the dead. 

HJO v mi.' 

hook Electra adjures Chrysoth >( to render inch 

expiations — to scatter them to the Winds, 01 on 

iv, the dust— to Let them doI approach the resting- 
place of the murdered kin I brysothemii 
promtsef to obey the injunction, and dept 

A violent ami powerful leenc between Cly- 
temnestra an«l I ensues, when the 

ten. lant enters (as wa d on) to announce 

the death of Orestes. In this recital he por- 
trays th«- ceremony of the Pythian races in I 

juetly celebrated, and which LD anim 

and faithful picture of an exhibition BO r. now ned, 
the reader may he pleased to lee, even in a 
feeble and cold translation. Orestes had obtained 
five victories in the first day — in the second lie 
Marts with nine competitors in the chariot-: 
— an Achaean, a Spartan, two Libyans — he him- 
self, with Thessalian steeds — a sixth from/Etolia; 
a Magnesian, an iEnian, an Athenian, and a 
Boeotian complete the number. 

" They took their stand where the appointed judges 
Had cast their lots, and ranged the rival cars ; 
Rang out the brazen trump ! Away they bound, 
Cheer the hot steeds and shake the slackened reins ; 
As with a body the large space is filled 
With the huge clangour of the rattling cars : 
High whirl aloft the dust-clouds ; — blent together 



Eacli presses each — and the lash rings — and loud 
Snort the wild steeds, and from their fiery breath, 
Along their manes and down the circling wheels, 
Scatter the flaking foam. Orestes still, 
Aye, as he swept around the perilous pillar 
Last in the course, wheel'd in the rushing axle ; 
The left rein curhed,— -that on tin- fatter hand 
Thing loose. — So 00 ered the chariots k.I . 

Sudden the £nian'i fierce and headlong Meade 

Broke from the hit— and, m the seventh time now 
The course was circled, on the Lybian tar 
Daslfd their wild fronts :— then order changed to ruin 
Car crashed on ear— the vide CrJBMBtn plain 

\\ a-. tea lih a , itrewnwith wrecks; the Athenian mi 

Slackened hit speed, and, wheeling round the m.. 

Unscathed and skilful, in the midmost space, 

Lett the wild tumult of that tossing storm 

Behind, Orestes, hitherto the la-t. 

Had yet kept back his coursers for the ch>- 

Now one sole rival left — on, on he flew, 

And the sharp sound of the impelling scourge 

Rang in the keen ears of the flying steed*. 

He nears — he reaches — they are side by side • 

Now one — the other — by a length the \ictor. 

The courses all are past — the w heels erect — 

All safe — when as the hurrying coursers round 

The fatal pillar dash'd, the wretched boy 





502 in \s : 

>K Sl;i< Icened the hfi rein : on tlir columi 

Craah'd the frail axle -- headlong from tin- i 
1V * Caught and all meshed within the n ins lie f « - 1 1 ; 
And masterless, the mad it) I along ! 

Loud from that mighty multitude arose 
A shriek — a shout ! Hut ycsttulay mch deeds — 
To-day such doom! — Now whirled upon the earth, 
Now his limbs dash'd aloft, tiny dragged him-tho-, 
Wild horses — till all gory from the win 
Released, — and no man, not his nearest frit 
Could in that mangled corpse have traced Ores' 

They laid the body on the funeral pyre, 

And while we speak, the Phocian strangers In ar, 

In a small, brazen, melancholy urn, 

That handful of cold ashes to which all 

The grandeur of the Beautiful hath shrunk. 

Hither they bear him — in his father's land 

To find that heritage — a tomb !" 

It is much to be regretted that this passage, 
so fine in the original, is liable to one great ob-. 
jection — it has no interest as connected with the 
play, because the audience know that Orestc- 
not dead, and though the description of the race 


retains its animation, the report of the catas- 
trophe loses the terror of reality, and appears 
but a highly coloured and elaborate falsehood. l v « 

The reader will conceive the lamentations of 
Electra, and the fearful joy of Clvt.innestra, at 
■ narrative by which the one appears to loi 
brother and a friend — the other, a son and an 
avenging foe. 

Chrysothemis joyfully returns to announce, 
that by the tomb of Agamemnon she disco\< r 
lock of hair ; libatious yet moisten the summit of 
the mound, and flowers of every hue are scattered 
over the grave. 'These, she thinks, 'are signs that 
Orestes is returned.' Electra, informing her of tin- 
fatal news, proposes that they, women as they 
are, shall attempt the terrible revenge which their 
brother can no longer execute. When C'hrvso- 
tliemis recoils and refuses, Electra still nurses the 
fell design. The poet has more than once, and 
now again with judgment, made us sensible of the 
mature years of Electra ;* she is no passionate, 

* When (line 6 14 J Clytemnestra reproaches Electra for 
using insulting language to a mother — and 'Electra, too, at such 
a time of life' — I am surprised that some of the critics should 
deem it doubtful whether Clytemnestra meant to allude to 
her being too young or too mature for such unfilial vehe- 
mence. The age of Orestes, so much the junior to 

o o 2 



BOOK wavering, and inexperienced pirl, l>ut the eld( 

chap ' >oni "' , '" ' lo "'"'' , '"' < - li:,r< l' ;i " of the childhood 

Iv - of it- male heir: nnwrdd.d and unloving 

soft matron otfree, do tender maiden affections, 
have unbent tin- nerrei of bet item, fiery, and 
conoetotrmted bohI. Yen aft. oiled 

on to iharpea hoi hatred — to diagnd her with 
tin- p r eao n f — to root her to one bloody mexaorj 

of tin- part 'to sour and fr<MZ<- up tin- <_ r <ntl<- 
th oag h tl of womanhood —to im- 

" And fill her from the crown to tin toe, top-full 
Of direst cruelty — make thick her blood — 
Stop up the access and passage to remorse,"* 

and fit her for one crowning <\<i*\. for which 
alone the daughter of the king of men lives on. 

At length the pretended Phocians enter, bear- 
ing the supposed ashes of Orestes ; the chief of 
the train addresses himself to Electra, and this 
is the most dramatic and touching scene in the 

Electra, proves the latter signification to be the indisputa- 
ble one, and so do the very words of Electra herself to her 
younger sister, Chrysothcmis, when she tells her that she is 
u growing old, unwedded," 

ioToa'ovce tov -ypovuv 
aXeKrpa ytjdpoicovaav dvvfievaia re. 

Brunck has a judicious note on Electra's age. Line 614. 
* Macbeth, act. i. scene 5. 


whole tragedy. When the urn containing, as SOOI 
the believes, the dust of lier brother, i> placed in (im> 
tlie hands of Eleetra, we ean well overleap time IV- 
and space, and lee before as the u tor 

who brought the relies of his own son upon the 
fttage, and shed no miinie sorrows* — we can well 

picture the emotions thai circle round the rasl 
audience — pity itself being mingled with the 
consciousness to which the audience alone are 

admitted, that lamentation will soon be replaced 
bv joy, and that the living Orestes U before Ins 
lister. It is by a most subtle and delicate art 

that Sophocles permit* this struggle between 
present pain ami anticipated pleasure, and car- 
ries on the passion of the spectators to wait 
breathlessly the moment when Orestes -hall be 
discovered. We now perceive why the poet at 

once, in the opening of the play, announced to 
us the existence and return of ( trestes — why he 
disdained the vulgar source of interest, the gross 
suspense we should have felt, if we had shared 
the ignorance of Eleetra, and not been admitted 
to the secret we impatiently long to be corninu- 
nieated to her. In this scene, our superiority to 
Eleetra, in the knowledge we possess, refines 
and softens our compassion, blending it with 
hope. And most beautifully here does Sopho- 
cles remove far from us the thought of the hard 
* See p. 592, note g. 



book hatred that hitherto animate! the mourner the 

(im , strong, proud ipirit ii melted away— the unman 

lv - and the lister alone appear. He whom ibe had 

loved more dearly tlian a mother whom |hfl 

bad Darted, ami wTed, ami prayed tor, i- %> am>- 

thin*;" in her hand- ; ami the la-t rite- it had not 
been hers to j>a\ • H«' had h 

M By strangers honoured, and by strangers mourn< 

All things had vanished with him—' vani-lnd in 

a day' — ' vanished U by a hurricane' — she is left 

with her foes alone. " Admit me," (sin 

M to thy refuge — make room for me in thy 


In these lamentations, the cold, classic drama 
seems to warm into actual life. Art, exqui 
because invisible, unites us at once with im- 
perishable nature — we are no longer delighted 
with Poetry — we are weeping with Truth. 

At length Orestes reveals himself, and now 
the plot draw s to its catastrophe. Clytemnestra 
is alone in her house, preparing a caldron for the 
burial ; Electra and the Chorus are on the stage ; 
the son — the avenger, is within ; suddenly the 
cries of Clytemnestra are heard. Again — again ! 
Orestes re-enters a parricide !* He retires as 

* Sophocles skilfully avoids treading the ground conse- 


iEgisthus is seen approaching ; and the adulter- iOOK 
ous usurper is now presented to us for the first ( . )iu> 
and last time — the crowning- victim of the sacri- ,v « 
fice. He comes flushed with joy and triumph. 
He has heard that the dreaded Orestes i- no 
more. Electra entertains him a few moment- 
with words darkly and exultingly ambiguous. 
He orders the doors to be thrown open, that all 
Argos and Myceme mav 166 the remains of his 
sole rival for the throne. The scene opens. — On 
the threshold (where with the Greeks the 
corpse of the dead was usually set out to view) 
lies a body covered with a veil or pall. Orestes 
(the supposed Phocian) stands beside. 

/isthus. Great Jove ! a grateful spectacle — if thus 
May it be said unsmiling ; yet italic. 
The awful Nemesis, be nigh and hear, 
I do recti the sentence ! — EUttM the pall. 
The dead was kindred to me, and shall know 
A kinsman's sorrow. 

Oreshs. Lift thyself the pall ; 

Not mine, but thine, the office, to survey 
That which lies mute beneath, and to salute 
Lovingly sad, the dead one. 

crated to /Eschylus. He does not bring the murder before 
us with the struggles and resolve of Oresto. 


BOOK JEyiathus. \W it Mi- 

lt it well Mid Go thou and call tlic intern . 
( II \l'. 

IV. |f |bc within ? 

Ortstis. Look not around for lur — 

She is bcsuU- thee !" 

iEgisthus lifts the pall, and beholds the 
body of Clytemneetra I He knows hti toe ;■? 
once. He knows that Orestes is before him. 
Hi- attempts to speak. The fierce Electra cuts 
him short, and Orestes, with item solemnity, 
conducts him from the stage to the spot on which 
iEgisthus had slain Agamemnon, so that the 
murderer might die by the son's hand in the 
place where the father fell. Thus artistically i- 
the catastrophe not lessened in effect, but 
heightened, by removing the deed of death 
from the scene — the poetical justice in the calm 
and premeditated selection of the place of slaugh- 
ter, elevates what on the modern stage would have 
been but a spectacle of physical horror into the 
deeper terror and sublimer gloom of a moral awe ; 
and vindictive murder, losing its aspect, is 
idealised and hallowed into religious sacrifice. 

IX. Of the seven plays left to us, " The Trachi- 
niae" is usually considered the least imbued 
with the genius of Sophocles ; and Schlegel has 
even ventured on a conjecture singularly desti- 


tute of even plausible testimony, — that Sopho- hook 
cles himself may not be the author. The plot 
is soon told. The play is opened by Deianira, 1V » 
he wife of Hercules, who indulges in melancholy 
reflections on the misfortunes of her youth, and 
the continual absence of her husband, of whom 
no tidings have been heard for months. She 

soon Learni from her son, llyllus, that Hevcuiei 

id to be leading an expedition into Enbo 
and our interest is immediately excited by 
Deianira 'a reply, which informs us that oracle- 
had foretold that this was to be the crisis* in the 
life of Hercules — that be was now to enjoy 1 
from his labours, either in a peaceful home or 
in the grave; and she send- ll\lhi- to join 
his lather, -hare hit enterprise, ami fate. 
The Chorus touehingly paint the anxious lo 
of Deianira in the following I'm 

* This is very characteristic of Sophocles : he is espe- 
cially fond of employing what may he called •■ crisis in life' 
M a source of immediate interest to the audience. So in the 
•• CEdiptM at t'olonos," CEdipus no sooner finds he is in the 
grove of the Furies than he knows his hour is approaching; 
so, also, in the " Ajax," the Nuntius announces from the 
soothsayer, that if Ajax can survive the one day which 
makes the crisis of his life, the anger of the goddess will 
cease. This characteristic of the peculiar style of Sophoclc- 
might be considered as one of the proofs (were any wanting) 
of the authenticity of the * Trachinia-.' 

>/0 ATHENS : 

U()()K " Tlmu, whom the star-y-xjiar lit (lid lull 

Into the sleep Brc-m which -her journey done — 
Iv> H« i parting steps awake thee, — Beautiful 

ntain of flame, () Sun ! 
S.i\, on what sea-girt strand, or inland si,, 
i I mt earth is hand btfcrt thy golem: 
In orient Asia, or where milder rays 
Tremble on western waters, wandercth he 

Whom bright Al< inena hot, 
Ah ! as some bird within a lonely nest 

The desolate wife puts sleep away with tears; 

And ever ills to be 
Haunting the abxence with dim hosts of fears, 
Fond fancy shapes from air dark prophets of the breast." 

In her answer to the virgin Chorus, Deianira 
weaves a beautiful picture of maiden youth i 
contrast to the cares and anxieties of wedded 
life : 

" Youth pastures in a valley of its own ; 

The scorching sun, the rains and winds of Heaven, 
Mar not the calm — yet virgin of all care ; 
But ever with sweet joys it buildeth up 
The airy halls of life." 

Deianira afterwards receives fresh news of 


Hercules. She gives way to her joy. Lichas, hook 
the herald, enters, and confides to her charge __" 

( MAI . 

some maidens whom the hero had captured. i\ 
Deianira is struck with compassion lor their I 
and with admiration of the noble bearing of 
of them, Iole. She is about to busy henelf in 
preparation for their comfort, when she learn- 
that Iole is her rival — the beloved mistreat of 
Hercules. The jealousy evinced by Deianira 
beautifully soft and womanly.* Even in uttering 
a reproach on Hercules, she says she cannot t 
SDger with him, yet how can she dwell in the 
same house with a younger and fairer rival ; — 

" She Ed whose years the flower that lades in mine 
Opens the leaves ol" beauty." 

Her affection, hex desire to retain the love of 
the hero, BOggeats to her remembrance a gift she 
had once received from ■ centaur who had fallen 
l>\ the shaft of Hercules. The centaur had as- 
sured her, that the blood from his wound, if 
preserved, would exercise the charm of a 
philtre over the heart of Hercules, and would 
ever recal and fix upon her his affection. 
She had preserved the supposed charm — she 

* M. Schlegel rather wantonly accuses Deianira of ' le- 
\ it \ :' — all her motives, on the contrary, are pure and high, 
though tender and affectionate. 


book steeps with it ■ robe thai ^h<- purposes to 

lend to Hercules as b rift ; but Deian 

< 1 1 \ i '. 

IV - in this fatal resohe, shows all the timiditv 
and WartllOM ol'lin- nature ; she < \<n qUCOfioni 

If it i>c i erime to ragsia the heart of her hoe* 
band; ihe eonsaks the Chorus, who advise the 

experiment, and line it may !><■ obserred, that 
tliis is skilfully done, lor it conveys the excuse 
of Deianira, the Chorus being, as it were, the 
representative of the audience.) Accordingly, 
-he sends the garment by Lichas. hai 

the herald gone, ere Deianira is terrified by ■ 
strange phenomenon: a part of the wool with 
which the supposed philtre had been applied to 
the garment, was thrown into the Bunlight, upon 
which it withered away — u crumbling like -a\s- 
dust" — while on the spot where it fell a sort of 
venomous foam froths up. While relating this 
phenomenon to the Chorus, her son, Hvllus, re- 
turns,* and relates the agonies of his father 

* Observe the violation of the unity which Sophocles, the 
most artistical of all the Greek tragedians, does not hesitate 
to commit, whenever he thinks it necessary. Hyllus, at the 
beginning of the play, went to Cenaeum ; he has been already 
there and back — viz. a distance from Mount CEta to a pro- 
montory in Eubcea, during the time about seven hundred and 
thirty lines have taken up in recital ! Nor is this all : just be- 
fore the last Chorus — only about one hundred lines back — 


under the poisoned garment: be had indued the hook 
robe on the occasion of solemn sacrifice, and all 

( HAI'. 

was rejoicing, when, IV. 

" As from the sacred offering and the pile 
The flame broke forth," 

the poison began to work, the tunic clung to the 
limbs of the hero, glued as if by the artificer, 
and in his agony and madness, Hercules dashet 
Lichas, who brought him the fatal gift, down tin- 
rock, and is now on his way home. On hearing 
these news, and the reproaches of her son, 
Deianira steals silently away, and destroys her- 
self upon the bridal-bed. The remainder of the 
play is very feeble. Hercules is represented 
in his anguish, which is but the mere raving 
of physical pain ; and after enjoining his 
son to marry Iole, (the innocent cause of his 
own sufferings,) and to place him yet living 
upon his funeral pyre, the play ends. 

The beauty of the " Trachiniiu " is in de- 
tached passages, in some exquisite bursts by the 

Lichas set out to Cenaeum; and yet sufficient time is sup- 
posed to have elapsed for him to have arrived there — been 
present at a sacrifice — been killed by Hercules, — and after 
all this, for Hyllus, who tells the tale, to have performed the 
journey back to Trachin. 

574 ATHENS : 

hook Chorus, and in tin- diameter of Deianira, \\1; 

artifice to regain the lore of her consort, unhap- 

iv. pily as it tennmates, is redeemed by a meekness 
of nature, a dellcaCJ of sentiment, and an 
anxious, earnest, unrejn-onelifnl devotion of Con- 
jugal love, which might alone suffice to -how 

the absurdity of modern declamation! on the de- 
basement of women, and the absence of pure 
ami true love, in that Land from which Sophocles 

drew his experience. 

X. The " Ajax" is far superior to the " Trachi- 
niae." The subject is one that none hut a Greek 
poet could have thought of, or a Greek audience 
have admired. The master-passion of a Greek 
emulation — the subject of the " Ajax" is emula- 
tion defeated. He has lost to Ulysses the 
prize of the arms of Achilles, and the shame of 
being vanquished has deprived him of his sen 

In the fury of madness he sallies from his 
tent at night — slaughters the flocks, in which his 
insanity sees the Greeks, whose award has galled 
and humbled him — and supposes he has slain 
the Atridae and captured Ulysses. It is in this 
play that Sophocles has, to a certain extent, at- 
tempted that most effective of all combinations 
in the hands of a master — the combination of the 
ludicrous and the terrible :* — as the Chorus im- 

* Even Ulysses, the successful rival of Ajax, exhibits a 
reluctance to face the madman, which is not without humour 


plies, " it is to laugh and to weep." But when the book 
scene, opening, discovers Ajax sitting amidst the 
slaughtered victims— when that haughty hero IV. 
awakens from his delirium — when he is aware 
that he has exposed himself to the mock- 
and derision of his foes — the effect is almod 
painful even for tragedy. In contrast to Ajax 
is the soothing, and tender Tecmessa. The n\<>- 
men of Sophocles are, indeed, gifted with an 
astonishing mixture of majesty and sweetm 
After a very pathetic farewell with his young 
son, Ajax affects to be reconciled to his lot, dis- 
guises the resolution he has formed, and by one 
of those artful transitions of emotion which at 
once vary and heighten interest on the stage, 
the Chorus, before lamenting, bursts into a 
strain of congratulation and joy. The heavy 
afHiction has passed away — Ajax is restored. 
The Nuntius arrives from the camp. Calchas, 
the soothsayer, has besought Teucer, the hero's 
brother, not to permit Ajax to quit his tent that 
day, for on that day only Minerva persecutes 
him ; and if he survive it, he may yet be pre- 
served and prosper. But Ajax has already 
wandered away, none know whither. Tecmessa 
hastens in search of him, and by a very rare de- 
parture from the customs of the Greek stage, the 
Chorus follow. 

.~>7(; ATHENS : 

■QQI Ajax appears again. Hispassion hn 

and concentrated. but they lead him od to death. 

( ' II A I*. 

i\. Hi- has been shamed, itiahtHHH intd, — he has madi 
himself a mockery to hii i Nobly to li^ 

nobly t<> die is the sole choice of a bra\«- man. 

It is ohainaiaiitk of the Greek temperament, 
that the peaaooagti of the Greek poetry • 
l>id a last lingering and balf-reluctanl farewell 
to the m. Then h a magnineenl fame* 
lite in those children ofthe beautiful Bellas ; die 
sun is to them as a familiar friend — tin- affliction 
or the terror of Hades is in the thought, that 
its fields are sunless. The orb which an inn 
their temperate heaven, which ripened their 
fertile earth, in which they saw the type of 
eternal youth, of surpassing beauty, of incar- 
nate poetry — human in its associations and yet 
divine in its nature — is equally beloved and 
equally to be mourned by the maiden tender- 
ness of Antigone, or the sullen majesty of Ajax. 
In a Chaldaean poem the hero would have bid 
farewell to the stars ! 

It is thus that Ajax concludes his celebrated 
soliloquy ; — 

" And thou that mak'st high heaven thy chariot-course, 
O Sun — when gazing on my father-land, 
Draw back thy golden rein, and tell my woes 



To the old man, my father — and to her nook 

Who nursed me at her bosom — my poor mother ! 
There will be (railing thro' the echoing walls l^ 

When — but away with thoughts like these! — the hour 
Brings on the ripening deed. — Death, death, look on me. 
Did I say death —it was a wa»te <>t' words ; 
lit shall be friends hereafter. 

— "1'is the DAI . 
Present and breathing round me, and the ear 
Of the sweet sun, that ne\er shall again 
Receive my greeting! — henceforth time is sun! 
And day a thing that is not ! —Beautiful Light, 
My Salamis — my country — and the floor 
Of my dear bousebold-hearth — and thou, bright Athena, 
Thou, — for thy sons and I were boys together — 

Fountain! and Riven, and ye Trojan Plaine, 

I loved ye a> my fosterers,- &W ft well ! 

Take in these words, the last earth bean from AjaX — 
AH else unspoken, in a Spectre Land 
I'll whisper to the Dead !" 

Ajax perishes on his sword— but the interest of 
the play survives him. For with the Greeks, bu- 
rial rather than death made the great close of life. 
Teucer is introduced to us ; the protector of the 
hero's remains : and his character, at once fierce 
and tender, is a sketch of extraordinary power. — 

VOL. II. i> i> 



I . 


i\ . 

Agamemnon, on the contrary — alio not pi 
sented to us till after the death of 
boisterous tyrant.* Finally. by tin- generoui in- 
tercession of Ulysses, who redeems his chi 
from the unfavourable conception we formed of 
him at tin; commencement of the play, the 
funeral rites are accorded, and a didactic and 
solemn moral from the Chorus concludes the 


X. The ' Philoctete-' hafl alwt D ranked 

by critics among .the moat elaborate and polished 
of the tragedies of Sophocles. In some respecti 

it deserves the eulogies bestowed on it. Hut one 
great fault in the conception will, I think, be 
apparent on the simple statement of the plot. 
Philoctetes, the friend and armour-bearer of 

* Potter says, in common with some other authorities 
that " we may be assured that the political enmity of the 
Athenians to the Spartans and Argives was the cause of this 
odious representation of Menelaus and Agammennon." — 
But the Athenians had, at that time, no political enmity with 
the Argives, who were notoriously jealous of the Spartans ; 
and as for the Spartans, Agamemnon and Menelaus were 
not their heroes and countrymen. On the contrary,, it was 
the thrones of Menelaus and Agamemnon, which the Spar- 
tans overthrew. The royal brothers were probably sacri- 
ficed by the poet, not the patriot. The dramatic effects 
required that they should be made the foils to the manly 
fervour of Teucer, and the calm magnanimity of Ulysses. 


Hercules, and the heir of that hero's unerring llu 
shafts nnd bow, had, while the Grecian fleet an- ,.„.„ 
chored at Chryse, (a small isle in the iEgaean,) 1V - 
been bitten in the foot by a serpent. The pain of 
the wound was insufferable — the shrieks and 
groans of Philoetetes disturbed the libations and 
sacrifices of the Greeks ; and Ulysses and J)io- 
med, when the fleet proceeded, left him, while 
asleep, on the wild and rocky solitudes of Lenm 
There, till the tenth year of the Trojan siege, li«- 
dragged out an agonizing life. The soothsay 
Helenus, then declared that Troy cohld not fall 
till Philoctetes appeared in the Grecian camp 
with the arrows and bow of Hercules. Ulysses 
undertakes to effect this object, and with Neop- 
tolemus, (son of Achilles,) departs for Lemnos. — 
Here the play opens. A wild and desolate 
shore — a cavern witli two mouths, (so that in 
winter there might be a double place to catch 
the sunshine, — and in summer a two- fold en- 
trance for the breeze,) and a little fountain of 
pure water, designate the abode of Philoctet. 

Agreeably to his character, it is by deceit 
and stratagem that Ulysses is to gain his object. 
Neoptolemus is to dupe him whom he has never 
seen, with professions of friendship and offers of 
services, and to snare away the consecrated 
weapons. Neoptolemus — whose character is a 

pp 2 

580 ATH1 ' 

BOOl sketch which Shakspea re alone run Id have bodied 

cimp °" f — ni,s a " *'"' -' '" ;roul :ir ''" lir :u "! hoi 
IV. youth, l>nt he ha> also it- timid irresolution it* 

docile submission t-» tip r "I the 

censure of the world. Il« recoils from tin- I 

task proposed to him ; In- would prefer violi 

to fraud . \< t In- dreads lest, having und 

the enterprise, his refusal to ad should 

sidered treachery to hi- coadjutor. It i- with 

;i deep and melancholy wisdom that I l\- 

wlio seems to contemplate hi- struggles with 

compassionate and not displeased Buperioi 

thus attempts to reconcile the young man ; — 

" Son of a noble sire 1 — / too, in youth, 
Had a slow tongue, and an impatient arm : 
But now, life tried, I liail in words, not deeds, 
The Universal Rulers of Mankind." 

Neoptolemusis at last persuaded. Ulysses with- 
draws, Philoctetes appears. The delight of the 
lonely wretch on hearing his native language ; on 
seeing the son of Achilles, — his description of hi- 
feelings when he first found himself abandoned in 
the desert — his relation of the hardships he has 
since undergone, are highly pathetic. He im- 
plores Neoptolemus to bear him away ; and 

IT! USE AM) FALL. 581 

when the youth consents, he bursts into an ex- i ;,,,, k 
elamation of joy, which to tlie audience, in the ( |m , 
secret of the perfidy to be practised on Dim, _^ 
must have excited the most lively emotion-. 
The characteristic excellence of Sophocles it, 
thai in lii- mod majestic creation-, he al\\a\- 

contrivea to introduce the iweetest touchea of 

humanity. PMloctetes will not e\eii quit his 
miserable desert until he has returned to hia 
Cave to bid it farewell — to kiss the only shelter 
that did not deny a refuge to his woes. In the 
joj <>f his heart he thinks, poor dupe, that he 
has found faith in man — in youth. He tru ■ 
the arrows and the bow to the hand of Neop- 
tolemua. Then, as he attempts to crawl along, 
thi' sharp agony of his wound completely over- 
masters him. He endeavoUTI in vain to stifle 
his groans ; the body conquera the mind. This 
Beema to me. aa 1 shall presently again observe, 

the blot of the play ; it is a mere exhibition of 
physical pain. The torture exhausts, till insen- 
sibility or sleep comes over, him. He lies down 
to rest, ami the young man watches over him. 
The picture is striking. Neoptolemus, at war 
with himself, does not seize the occasion. Phi- 
loctetea wakes. He is ready to go on board ; 
he implores and urges instant departure. Xeop- 
tolemus recoils— the suspicion, of PhilocteteS are 

ATHENS : fw# 

BOOK awakened ; he think- thai tin- stranger, I 

will abandon him!. At length, the young 

iv. man, by a violent effort, speaks abruptly 
" Tfiou must sail to Troy,— to the Greeks the 

11 The ( Ireeks- «the Atridse ! the betra 
of Philoctetes ! — those beyond pardon! — those 
whom for ten years he hag pursued with the 
curses of a wronged, and deserted, and solitary 
spirit. " Give m»- hack," he cries, " my bow 
and arrows/' And when Neoptolemus rem 
he pours forth a torrent of reproach. The -on of 
the truth-telling Achilles can withstand no longer. 
He is about to restore the weapo ns, when L lyases 
rushes on the stage and prevents nim. 

At length, the sufferer is to be left — left once 
more alone in the desert. He cannot go with 
his betrayers — he cannot give glory and con- 
quest to his inhuman foes ; in the wrath of his 
indignant heart even the desert is sweeter than 
the Grecian camp. And how is he to sustain 
himself without his shafts ? Famine adds a 
new horror to the dreary solitude, and the wild 
beasts may now pierce into his cavern : but 
their cruelty would be mercy ! His contradic- 
tory and tempestuous emotions, as the sailors 
that compose the Chorus are about to depart, 
are thus told. 


The Chorus entreat him to accompany them 

Phil. Begone. 

C/ior. It is a friendly bidding — we obey — 

Come, let us go. — To ship, my comradt ■>. 

r/ni. No— 

No, do not go — by the great Jove, who hears 
is curses — do not go. 

( '/tor. Bi calm. 

Phil. Sun t >t rangers ! 

By the Gods, leave me not. 




Choi: But now you bade u> ' 

Phil. A\ — unit canst foe chiding, 

That a poor desperate wretch) maddened with pain. 
Should talk as madmen do ! 

( 'hor. Come, then, with us. 

Phil. Never! — oh — never ! Were the veriest bolts 
Of the Fire darting Thunderer hurl'd against me. 
Still would I answer ' Never !' Perish Troy, 
And all beleaguered round its walls — yea, all 
Who had the heart to spurn a wounded wretch ; 
But, but — nay — yes — one prayer, one boon accord me. 

Chor. What would'st thou have ? 

Phil. A sword, an axe, a something ; 

So it can strike, no matter ! 



I 'hut . 

I'lui. wint !— tiir tino liiinti. to bin mi- "H tin* bead — 

(ii \r. 
i\. Ilu -t limbo] — To Di.itli, to solemn Death, at 


( hor. W i 

1'lul. 'Iitr. 

(hor. Ullitll. : 

/'////. In Hades. 

Having thu> workrd of Dp to the utmost 
point of sympathy prith the abandoned I'hiloc- 
tetes, the poet now gradually shi ■!- a aentle and 

holier light over the intense gloom to which f/fl 
had been led. Neoptolemus, touched with ge- 
nerous remorse, steals back to give the betrayed 
warrior his weapons — he is watched by the vigi- 
lant Ulysses — an angry altercation takes place 
between them. Ulysses, finding he cannot in- 
timidate, prudently avoids personal encounter 
with, the son of Achilles, and departs to apprize 
the host of the backsliding of his comrade. A 
most beautiful scene ensues, in which Neoptole- 
mus restores the weapons to Philoctetes — a scene 
which must have commanded the most exquisite 
tears, and the most rapturous applauses of the au- 
dience ; and, finally, the God so useful to the an- 



cient poets, brings all things, contrary to the ge- book 
neral rule of Aristotle,* to a happy close, Hercules ( (ni , 
appears, and induces his former friend to bo- 1V - 
company Neoptolemus to the Grecian camp, 
where his wound shall be healed. The farewell 
of Philoctetes to his cavern— to the nymphs of 
the meadows — to the roar of the ocean, wh 
-pray the south wind dashed through his rude 
abode — to the Lyeian stream and the plain of 
Lemnos, — is left to linger on the ear like ■ 
solemn hymn, in which the little that is mourn- 
ful only heightens the majestie iweetness of all 
that is musical. The dramatic art in the several 
scenes of Ais play, Sophocles has never excelled 
and scarcely equalled. The contrast of charac- 
ter in Ulysses and Neoptolemus has in it a realr 
a human strength and truth, that is more 
common to the modern than the ancient drama. 
But still the fault of the story is partly that the 
plot rests upon a base and ignoble fraud, ami 
principally that our pity is appealed to by the 

* That the catastrophe should he unhappy ! 

ArUtot. Poet. xiii. 

In the same chapter Aristotle properly places in the 
lecond rank of fable those tragedies, which attempt the trite 
and puerile moral 01 punishing the bat! and rewarding tin. 


586 ATHENS: 

BOOI coarse sympathy witli physical pain : tin.- rags 
that covered tin* sons, the tainted corruption of 

(MAP. ' 

IV. the ulcers, arc brought to bear, not so uracil on 
the mind, as on the nerve* ; and when tin- hero 
is represented at shrinking with corporeal ag 
— the Mood oo/ing from his foot, tin livid If 

rolling down the !>row — we sicken and torn away 
from the spectacle ; we hai e n<» longer thai plea- 
sure in our own pain which ought to be the cha- 
racteristic of true tragedy. It i* idle to vindi- 
cate this error by any dissimilarity bets 
ancient and modern dramatic art. As 
so Art, always has some universal and permanent 
laws. Longinus rightly considers pathos a part 
of the sublime, for pity ought to elevate us ; 
but there is nothing to elevate us in the noi- 
some wounds, even of a mythical hero ; our 
human nature is too much forced back into 
itself— and a proof that in this the ancient art 
did not differ from the modern, is in the exceed- 
ing rarity with which bodily pain is made the 
instrument of compassion with the Greek tra- 
gedians. The Philoctetes and the Hercules are 
among the exceptions that prove the rule.* 

* When Aristophanes (in the character of iEschylus) 
ridicules Euripides for the vulgarity of deriving pathos from 
the rags, &c. of his heroes, he ought not to have omitted all 


XII. Another drawback to our admiration of the book 
Philoctetes is in the comparison it involuntarily 
courts with the Prometheus of TEschylus. Both iv. 
are examples of fortitude under suffering— of 
the mind's conflict with its fate. In either play I 
dreary waste, a savage solitude, OOnpritlltCl the 
scene. But the towering sublimity of the Prome- 
theus dwarfs into littleness e\ ery image of hero or 
demi-god with which we contrast it. What are the 
Chorusof mariners, Old the astute I'lysses, and tin- 
boyish generosity of Neoptoleraus — what is the 
lonely cave on the shores of Lemnos — what the 
high-hearted old warrior, with his torturing 
wound, and his saeivd bow, — what are all 
these to the vast Titan, whom the fiends chain 
to the rock beneath which roll the Rivers of 
Hell, for whom the Daughters of Ocean are mi- 
nisters, to whose prinueval birth the Gods of 
Olympus are the upstarts of a day, whose soul 
is the treasure-house of a secret which threatens 
the realm of heaven, and for whose unimaginable 
doom Earth reels to its base, all the might of 
Divinity is put forth, and Hades itself trembles 

censure of the rags and sores of the favourite hero of Sopho- 
cles. And if the Telephus of the first is represented as a 
beggar, so also is the (Edipus at Colonos of the latter. 
Euripides lias great faults, but he has been unfairly treated 
both by ancient and modern hvpercriticisni. 

\ I IN \s : 

eooa m if receive! ill Indomitable and awful 

V( t. ;ts I have before intimated, it is the \ 


i\. grandeur of £echylof thai moil bare made hii 
poemi leu attractiTe on tin- -t;i<j<' than thoi 
the bomane and flexile SoplmH \i>il>le 

representation can body forth fell thoughts — 

they overpower the imagiaatioo, biri they da 

not Dome home to our houaehold and fami- 
liar feelingi. In the contrast between the 
• PhUoctetea 1 ami tin- • rVametheiia ' is con- 
densed the contrail between /Eecbyloe and 

Sophocles. They are both poets of tin- highest 
eoaoeivabie order ; bnl tin- on, -<<m> almost 
above appeal to our affections — I j i — tempeetoeeni 
gloom appals the imagination, the vivid glare 

of his thoughts pierces tin- innero 
the intellect, but it is only by accident that he 
strikes upon the heart. The other, in his 
grandest flights, remembers that men make 
his audience, and seems to feel as if Art lost the 
breath of its life, when aspiring beyond the atmo- 
sphere of human intellect, and human passions. 
The difference between the creations of iEschv- 
lus and Sophocles is like the difference between 
the Satan of Milton and the Macbeth of Shaks- 
peare. iEschylus is equally artful with Sopho- 
cles — it is the criticism of ignorance that has 
said otherwise. But there is this wide distinc- 


tion— iEeehylw is artful as ■ dramatist to be read, IU J ,,K 
Sophocles as a dramatist to be acted. If we get rid c;u u , 
of actors, and stage, andaodience, £sehylus will J^ 
thrill and move ds no less than Sopnocl 

through a more intellectual if less passion 
medium. A poem maj be dramat» no! 

theatrical — may have all the effects of the drama 
in perusal, but by not sufficiently enlisting the 
skill of the actor-nay, by soaring beyond the 

highest reach ol histrionic capacities, maj I 

those effect- in representation. The storm in 

1 Lear' is a highly dramatic agency, when our 
imagination is left free to conjure up the angry 


• Bid the winds Mow tlie earth into the sea, 
Or >well the curled waters." 

hut a storm on tin 1 stage, instead of exceeding, 
BO poorly mimics, the reality, that it can never 
realise the effect which the poet designs, and with 
which the reader is impr esse d. So is it with 

supernatural and fanciful creations, especially 
of the more delicate and subtle kind. The Ariel 
of the ' Tempest,' the Fairies of the ' Midsummer 
Night's Dream," and the Oceanides of the ' Pro- 
metheus,' are not to be represented by human 
shapes. We cannot say that they are not dra- 

690 ATIII.NS : 

HOOK niatie, Itllt, tlie\ are Hot theatlieal. Wi 

sympathise with the poet, but Dot %\itli the 
( ii \p. J » ' 

IV. actor. For the Mum- reason, '" ;i 

all creationi of human character, thi 
highly taal t J i * ■ imagination, thai lilt tie- reader 
wholly out of ;ietu;il experience, ami above the 
common earth, are comparativel) feeble when 
reduced to visible forme. The mosl metaphy- 
sical ptayi ofShakspeare -ire the leasl popular in 
representation. Thus the rerj genius of £achy- 
las, that kindles us in the closet, nm-t often ha\ e 
militated against him on the stage. Hut in 
phocles all — even the Divinities themselves- 
touched with humanity ; thej are not too subtle 
or too lofty to be submitted to mortal gaze. We 
feel at once that on the stage Sophocles ought to 
have won the prize from iEschylus ; and, as 
a proof of this, if we look at the plays of each 
we see that scarcely any of the great chara< 
of iEsehylus could have called into sufficient 
exercise the powers of an actor. Prometheus 
on his rock, never changing even his position, 
never absent from the scene, is denied all the 
relief, the play and mobility, that an actor 
needs. His earthly representative could be but 
a grand reciter. In the " Persians " not only 
the theatrical but the dramatic effect is wanting 
— it is splendid poetry put into various mouths, 


but there is no collision of pa—ion-, no surprise, book 
no incident, no plot, no rapid dialogue in which 
words are but the types of emotions. In the IV. 
1 Suppliants' Garrick could have made nothing 
of Pelasgns. [n the there 

are not above twenty or thirty lines SSSJgned 
the part of Eteocles in which the art of the actor 
could greatly llfifl the genius of the poet. In the 
trilogy of the f Agamemnon, ' the ' Choephori,' 
and the ■ Orestes,' written in advanced years, 
we may trace the contagious innovation of So- 
phocles ; but still, even in these tragedies, 
there is no part so effective in representa- 
tion as those afforded by the great charac- 
ters of Sophocles. In the first play, the hypo- 
crisy and power of Clytemnestra would, it is true, 
have partially required and elicited the talents 
of the player ; but Agamemnon himself IS but 

a thing of pageant, and the splendid bursts of 

Cassandra might have been effectively uttered 
by a very interior histrionic artist. In the second 
play, in the scene between Oi ud his mo- 

ther, and in the gathering madness of Orestes, 
the art of the poet would unquestionably task 
to the utmost the skill of the performer. But in 
the last play, (the Furies,) perhaps the sublimest 
poem of the three, which opens so grandly with 
the parricide at the sanctuary, and the Furies 



book sleeping around him, there i- not on 

from tin' beginning to the end, in which an 
iv. eminent actor could exhibit In- gem 
Bat when we come to the plaj 
we feel that ■ nen erf in the drama ii created, 
we fed that the artist poet has * ■ : 1 1 1 « - « ! into lull 
existence the artist actor. Hia theatrical etfe< 
an- tangible, actual could be represented to- 
morrow in Paris— in London— everywhere. We 
find, therefore, that with Sophocles has pas 
down to posterity the name of the great act 

* The single eflbcta, nut the plots. 

f "Polus, celebrated," says Gellius, "throughout all ( - 
a scientific actor of the noblest tragedies. " Gellius relat. 
him an anecdote, that when acting the Electee of Sophoi 
in that scene where she ated M ith the urn, mpp 

to contain her brother's remains, he brought on the stage the 
urn and the relics of his own son, so that his lamentation* 
were those of real emotion. Polus acted the hero in the 
plays of CEdipus Tyrannus and CEdipus at Colonos. — Arrian. 
ap. Stob. xcvii. 28. — The actors were no less important per- 
sonages on the ancient, than they are on the modern stage. 
Aristotle laments that good poets were betrayed into episodes, 
or unnecesarily prolonging and adorning parts not wanted 
in the plot, so as to suit the rival performers. — Arist. de 
Poet. ix. Precisely what is complained of in the present day. 
The Attic performers were the best in Greece — all the other 
states were anxious to engage them, but they were liable to 
severe penalties if they were absent at the time of the 
Athenian festivals. (Plut. in Alex.) They were very 



in his principal plays. And I think the English book 
reader, even in the general analysis and occa- 

. CHAP. 

sional translations with which 1 have ventured IV. 
to fill so many pages, will perceive that all the 
exertions of subtle, delicate, and pa»ionutr 
power, even in a modern actor, would be abso- 
lutely requisite to do justice to the characters of 
CEdipus at Colonos, Antigone, Electra,and Phi- 

This, then, was the distinction between JEs- 
chylus and Sophocles— both were artists, as 
genius always must be, but the art of the latter 
adapted itself better to representation. And tin's 
distinction in art was not caused merely by pre- 

highly remunerated. Polus could earn no less than a talent 
in two days, (Plut. in Hhet. vit.,) a much larger sum (con- 
sidering the relative values of money) than any English 
actor could now obtain for a proportionate period of service. 
Though, in the time of Aristotle, actors as a body were 
not highly respectable, there was nothing derogatory in the 
profession itself. At an earlier period the high birth of Sopho- 
cles and iEschylus did not prevent their performing in their 
own plays. Actors often took a prominent part in public 
affairs ; and Aristodemus, the player, was sent ambassador 
to king Philip. So great, indeed, was the importance at- 
tached to this actor, that the state took on itself to send 
ambassadors in his behalf to all the cities in which he had 
engagements — iEschin. De Fals. Legat. p. 30 — 203, ed. 


Q Q 

59 1 ATI 1 1 • 

book cedence in time. Il;t<l .!.-< Ii\lu- followed 5 
chap l , '"" , ' ,,> ' f •wMud equally hare existed; it v 
JV - the natural consequence of the distinctions m 
their genius— the our more Bublime, the othei 
more impassioned the one exalting the ima- 
gination, the other appealing to the h< 
. r.-rhylus is tin- Michael of the drama, 

Sophocles the Rafiaele. 

\l 1 1. Thnf have I presented to the genera] 
der the outline of all the remaining tragediei of 
Sophocles. In the great length at which I have 
entered in this, not the least difficult, part of my 
general task, I have widely innovated on the plan 
panned by the writers of Grecian history. For 
this innovation I offer no excuse. It is her 
poetry at the period we now examine, as her 
philosophy in a later time, that makes the indivi- 
duality of Athens. In Sophocles we he- 
hold the age of Pericles. The wars of that 
brilliant day were as pastimes to the mighty 
carnage of oriental or northern battle. The re- 
duction of a single town, which, in our time, 
that has no Sophocles, and no Pericles, a cap- 
tain of artillery would demolish in a week, 
the proudest exploit of the Olympian of the 
Agora; — a little while, and one defeat wrests the 
diadem of the seas from the brows of * The 
Violet Queen ;' — scanty indeed the ruins that 


attest the glories of "The Propylaea, the Par- book 

tlicnon, the Porticoes, and the Docks," to which 

the eloquent orator appealed as the ' inde- j\. 

structible possessions ' of Athens ; — along the 
desolate site of the once tumultuous Agora the 
peasant drives his oxen — the champion-deity* 
of Phidias, whose spectral apparition daunted 
the Barbarian Alarie, | and the gleam of whose 
spear gladdened the mariner beneath the heigbts 
of Sunium, has vanished from the Acropoli- : 
but, happily, the Age of Pericles has its Stamp 
and effigy in an art more imperishable than 
that of war — in materials more durable than 
those of bronze and marble, of ivory and gold. 
In the majestic harmony, the symmetrical 
grace, of Sophocles, we survey the true por- 
traiture of the genius of the times, and the old 
man of Colonos still celebrates the name of 
Athens in a sweeter song than that of the night- 
ingale,!— and hi melodies that have survived the 
muses of Cephisus.§ Sophocles was allegori- 
cally the prophet when he declared that in the 

* The Minerva Promucltus. t) peyuXt) Aftfra. 
t Zosimus, v. p. 294. 
X CEdip. Colon. 671, ftc 
§ Ibid, line 691. 

506 vrm ■ 

hook gfftve of (Edipoi WM to be found tin* saci 

PiNinliiin ami the everlasting defence of the oil 
ewip. ~ .. -. 

I\. of ItlCSCUS. 








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" We close our remarks on Air. Willis's work with a sincere expression of gratitude for tl 
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bv the conviction that he is qualified and likely to attain a literary station honourable both 
his country.'' — London Revieu-. 


Second Edition, in Two Volumes, with Maps, 



Translated by his friend, H. Reeve, Esq., under the Author's inspection. 

iinend M. de Tocqueville's work, as the very best on the subject of America we have ever 

-BlucLu ind. 

most complete work that has ever appeared on the government of the United States." — Sun. 

Second Edition. In Three Volumes, Post Octavo, 


1>\ Mrs. Jameson, Author of " Characteristics of "Womi v" 

se graceful and delightful volumes afford a vivid instance of the strength and reach of the female, 
the present day : they are full of woman's keenness of observation, and her enthusiastic warmth 
g, and of the rich elegance of her imagination," 



In 2 Vols. Post 8vo. with Fifty-two Etchings by the Author. 

A New and beautiful Edition. 


By Mas. Jameson, Author of" The Diary of as Bum rii," &c. 

eautiful and touching commentary on the heart and mind of woman." — l.itemru Gazette. 
truly delightful volume* — the most charmiug of all the works of a charming writer." — Blackuotnt. 


New Edition, Revised nnd enlarged, in 2 Vols. Post 8vo. 


13 y Mm. J I mis (is. 

are indebted to Mrs. Jameson for two very delightful volumes, equally creditable to herself, and 

geoiis to her readers.'' — Ktm Monthly V 

\\ . 

In one Volume, Foolscap, with a Portrait of the Author. 


By the Author of" The Golden Violet," "The Imi»ro\ isatrice," &c. 

roem characterised by exquisite gracefulness and power of imagery. — Morning Post. 

M IfDlRl I 0TLIY1 m u i-i BLH LTION*. 

\\ I. 
KB. I'.l I ,W1 !:• I ItAYI 

■ lition. In two Vob. J' 

T II E S T U I) E N I 

By ih«» Author of* i:> M m Anui, m, lMl Mll i 

" ' • ''' < h - ]><> w -r »»'<! >><• •• - Mulwer'e former work*, we know none 

.• tlniil.T in. .n- the present production; iu pages ere full of new 

turns.' - / 

•• W« think this book destined to work a great and beneficial influence on the in 
"I our time." — Kimnintr, 

\\ II. 


1 it Two Volumes 8ro. with Engravings. 


" That this book will bare an immense circulation there can kt Htth inht. It it in fiw., 
i" bo so considered,— The Sailor'a Vade Mecum. A work which no seaman should be withoai 



In Tiro Volumes 8to. 


By Sir Willi \m Oi ul 


(The Map aiul Work told teparately.) 

" This very able and standard work is, indeed, a lasting memorial of eminent literary e*- 
to n subject of great importance, and one dear not only to every scholar, but to every reader 
to whom the truth of history is an object of consideratien." — Literary GatetU. 

" These elegant volumes are indispensable to the complete scholar and the classical trar 



In Two Volumes, Plates. 


*' We have derived unmixed pleasure from the perusal of these volumes, and have no hesi 
assigning to them a very high place amongst the best modern books of travel." — Atlas. 



In Two Volumes, Octavo, 


By Frederic Von Schlegel. 
Translated by J. H. Robertson. Esq. with Life of the Author. 

*' The work now before us is doubtlessly a splendid production, replete with the soundest a 
extensive erudition." — Metropolitan. 



■ ■" " — ~ ■ — »— »-« 


Lytton, Edward George Lytton 




Athens, its rise and fall